Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Blame is on Me

John Marine | 5/04/2011 03:24:00 PM | |
When a sports team loses, do you blame one player or the entire team for the loss? This post was inspired by my Houston Astros blowing a 2-0 lead earlier today at the Cincinnati Reds to lose 3-2 thanks to crappy closing pitching. Before this fail job, we had our longest winning streak of the season going of three games. This was a division (NL Central) game for my Astros that we just let slip away. So I am asking you sports fans this question to get some discussion going.

A Brief Note Before I Begin...

I know there may be people who aren't Astros fans just because we're not some powerhouse team or just because we're not as good as other teams, but you'd hate seeing your favorite team fail. Like all the people who feared the Boston Red Sox were heading towards an abysmal season because of their poor start or fear that the Los Angeles Lakers wouldn't be successfully able to defend their two-time NBA Champion status. Fact is- I couldn't give a damn if my ranting is irrelevant just because my favorite team(s) are not the same team everybody else loves. Fact is... if your favorite team is failing, you'd be disappointed regardless of what team you root for. So don't think I'm out of my mind just because my favorite team(s) aren't any elite program in a sporting league. True fans stick with their teams regardless of whether or not they stink or not. I am NO fair weather sports fan. I am not going to go with one other team just because they are doing much better than a team I normally love.

This aside... let's go!

--- The Blame is on Me ---
Heaven forbid... I'm an Astros fan, but I get so sick of our team constantly failing. My Astros were up 2-0 for most of the game today at the Cincinnati Reds heading into the Bottom of the 9th. Then with no outs, the Reds get some Reds on base on a bunch of hits including one wild pitch by closer Brandon Lyon. The Reds end up winning 3-2 when we could have clearly closed the door on the Reds to extend our winning streak to four games. But NOOOOO.... Brandon Lyon allows three hits as the Astros lost 3-2 with nobody out! Otherwise, the debuting Anuery Rodriguez would have won with a one-hit shutout. Take nothing away from the Reds; when you have a chance to close games, CLOSE THEM! Don't let the other team come back in a time that matters most. This is like leading every lap of a certain race... all to get passed for the lead on the final lap. All that work previously doesn't mean crap if you can't close out.

So when a team loses... do you think one player is to blame, coaching staff, or does the entire team deserve blame? I think the logical choice is that the team let a game go. You can blame one player or one coach, but a team eventually loses. I usually don't believe there is a such thing as a weakest link for a team. A team has to play consistently and coherently. Sometimes, a team just doesn't get it done. It is a part of sports as well as life. You can't win them all.

Blame the Team?

My only problem with saying a team choked is that I'm assuming the entire team didn't last long enough to prevent the other team from winning. Like a few years ago when Sage Rosenfels (former backup QB for the Texans) tried to be too much of a hero as we were holding down the Indianapolis Colts by 17, his dumb ass antics gave the game away to the Colts as we were too dumbfounded and discombobulated to prevent the Colts from winning. I'd put the blame on Sage for that Texans' loss because it was all on him in turning the ball over countless times to give the Colts new life, followed by (granted we were up against Peyton Manning) doing next to nothing trying to stop the Colts from winning. It was the team who helped build up a lead, and you (as a QB) tried to be too cute and too much of a hero... and you blew it for your team.

The Weakest Link.

That's why when disgruntled fans feel like there is one weakest link that seems to be the reason why teams lose games. You know, "blame it on (player's name here)." Some fans feel the blame is on coaching staff at times, including the coach himself/herself. Sports often come down to finding a weak link to blame for a team's losing ways. The fact is, though, that there are many aspects as to why teams lose games. It is never about one key moment. That's why you have these film sessions. The team wants its players to win. To make the team better, EVERY situation is acted out and analyzed to help players from making the same mistakes in the future. We can't be perfect, but we can learn from our mistakes and be better in future games.

Sports fans... when a team loses, do you blame it on one person or on the entire team? Talk to me! Comment away! Also, don't forget to share my material as well as Follow my blog and fan me on Facebook! I would really appreciate your support. Thank you for reading!

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John B. Marine said...

It's easy to blame one player, kind of like how you blame the umpire/referee for blown calls that ruin the game.  Sometimes it's more than one player (i.e. the offense stunk but the defense kept us in the game).  Sometimes the whole team loses focus.  Well, if one player does poorly, then another player can always make up for it or else the whole team loses and that's what matters.

I saw the Sage Rosenfels meltdown live.  I feel bad.  At least it wasn't a playoff game.  See Reggie Miller's 8 points in 9 seconds--blame the Knicks for losing because they clearly choked.  And Patrick Ewing's in-and-out the rim missed layup in Game 7 which was clearly a bad play, but the onus also lies on the rest of the Knicks team that couldn't put Ewing in a better situation in the last 5 seconds of the game.

Anyway, good luck to the Texans next season except in Week 3.

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