February 16, 2009 posted by

Ball Don’t Lie

“I thought he’d be the first black president,” Wetzel says. “He was Barack Obama before Barack Obama.”

My brother, a philosophy teacher and ex-ballplayer, sent this to me titled, “The best article on basketball I’ve ever read.” My take is that it’s a lot more than that. It’s a metaphor for life.

It’s long, in-depth, and analytical. It takes some thought to get through; and you’ve got to sign up for the NY Times (free) to read it. But if you’re interested in digging into your brain’s trenches and looking at topics you’ve not considered, it will be well worth your time. I’m pretty busy. It took me days to get around to reading it. Once finding the time, I wished it would go on and on.

“Here we have a basketball mystery: a player is widely regarded inside the N.B.A. as, at best, a replaceable cog in a machine driven by superstars. And yet every team he has ever played on has acquired some magical ability to win.”

The storyline revolves around an analysis of why Shane Battier is one of the games most effective players. If you haven’t heard of him, or thought he was a stiff, that’s part of the catch. It goes into this, and more, and should leave you thinking not only different about basketball, but life in general. I can apply this rationale directly to any place I’ve worked, or even to how family units work together.

We live in a sensationalized world, where the squeaky wheel indeed gets the grease. But what makes it go around is not just those in the limelight, but those who seek primarily for excellence in self, no matter what others think.

The No Stats All Star
By Michael Lewis


  • I read this article on Sunday in the magazine. It’s fantastic. Michael Lewis writes some of the best articles out there.

  • I can’t freakin stand the sport of basketball, but that was an outstanding piece.

  • Great article and glad I found it when I did since Battier and Bryant are playing each other in the playoffs right now.

  • This article changed how I’ve been watching Houston. Battier still doesn’t get much press. It’s pretty amazing.

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