We’re going to go ahead and nominate Brian Scalabrine’s essay-announcement for CSNNE as the greatest piece of athlete-writing this year, or perhaps any year. Scalabrine, who spent last season as an assistant coach for the Golden State Warriors before being demoted by Mark Jackson, is going back to Boston to be a TV analyst. You might even say the White Mamba is “coming home.” He did say that, actually.
In a beautiful spoof (tribute?) to LeBron James’ own “I’m Coming Home” essay in Sports Illustrated, Scalabrine — who is not from Boston — recounts the steps that brought him back to the Celtics franchise. It’s definitively funny stuff. Excerpts from the piece are below (with the corresponding LeBron lines to go with them):
Before anyone cared where I would play basketball, I was a kid raised in Enumclaw, Washington. It’s where I walked. It’s where I ran. It’s where I did a paper route at age six. It’s always held a special place in my heart.
(LeBron: Before anyone ever cared where I would play basketball, I was a kid from Northeast Ohio. It’s where I walked. It’s where I ran. It’s where I cried. It’s where I bled. It holds a special place in my heart.)
But if I had to do it all over again, I’d probably still have left. Chicago, for me, has always been like graduate school. I myself had always considered getting my MBA at Northwestern. These past four years helped bolster my resume to showcase the well-rounded individual I am.
(LeBron: Miami, for me, has been almost like college for other kids. These past four years helped raise me into who I am.)
So I took my talents to Golden State searching for their championship and I really believed we could do something magical if we came together. But then I was sent down to the D-League where we flew to Hidalgo, TX on commercial flights with no first class sitting next to a 7’2” center named Ognjen Kuzmic. There was nothing magical happening down there, no matter how much we came together.
(LeBron: I went to Miami because of D-Wade and CB. We made sacrifices to keep UD. I loved becoming a big bro to Rio. I believed we could do something magical if we came together. And that’s exactly what we did!)
I think I can elevate Kelly Olynyk’s game by the amount of research I make my interns do before announcing road games.
(LeBron: I see myself as a mentor now and I’m excited to lead some of these talented young guys.)
In Boston, nothing is given. Remember in the movie The Departed when Francis Costello said, “No one gives it to you. You have to take it.” That was a great scene and a great Boston movie.
(LeBron: In Northeast Ohio, nothing is given. Everything is earned. You work for what you have.)
And so on. The whole thing is amazing and worth your time. A special shoutout must to given to this passage, which has no true LeBron-essay brethren: “And for the record I never played for the Warriors, I was just a coach, didn’t people see me holding my clipboard. I don’t understand why people couldn’t put it together, I was holding a clipboard, I was a real coach.”
This guy is going places.
Photo via CSNNE