“Enjoy your childhood while it lasts.” This is something we’ve all heard from our parents, at least once in our lifetime. And as much as some of us hate to admit it, they’re right saying it. It really is the best, most careless part of one’s life.
Being a kid, you’re not facing any expectations. You’re not even bothered with the outcome, and you don’t think about the consequences. You simply enjoy the process.
This is especially applicable when playing any kind of sport, basketball included. If you’ve ever played on any level, you know this to be true. I’m not saying that players don’t enjoy playing basketball when it grows into their profession. However, I’m sure that the overall feeling isn’t the same compared to when they were hooping on the playgrounds as kids, regardless of all the byproducts that arise from their success.
Jamal Crawford, an NBA veteran who recently signed with the Brooklyn Nets, shares the same stance. Crawford’s got nearly 40,000 minutes on his 40-year-old legs and is about to play in his 20th season in the NBA. He’s made over $123 million from contracts only and had won the NBA Sixth Man of the Year three times. The guy has an illustrious NBA career. But still, the most fun he’s had playing basketball was in high school.
To this day, even being in the NBA, playing college, playing all that, playing here in high school is the most fun I’ve ever had playing basketball. It was so pure. You were able to dream about everything. Dream about what could happen in the future. Now that you’re actually living that, you’re like ‘ok, it’s great how this worked out’ but high school is the most fun I ever had playing basketball. You were just so free.Jamal Crawford, The Player’s Tribune
So there you have it. All the millions earned, all the benefits from being an NBA player, all the advantages which arose from it, all of that pale in comparison Jamal, just from the standpoint of how fun the game of basketball used to be for him.
If his parents have ever said the famous phrase about childhood being the best phase of one’s life, Crawford had to do the one thing we all fear; admit that his parents were right because they were – at least regarding how fun playing basketball used to when he was younger.