Paying Your Dues

I was watching last night’s game between the Celtics and the Cavs and I was thinking about the fantastic young players the Celtics have on that team, Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart, and Terry Rozier. As good as those players are, it felt like the enormity of what they have accomplished this year and the stage they are now on caught up to them a bit in Cleveland.

I’m rooting for the Celtics in this series so I hope they turn it around in the next three games and earn their way to the finals.

But it would not surprise me if they don’t.

As their coach Brad Stevens said last night after the game:

“I mean, everything is tough. In this deal, it’s a blast to have to grit your teeth, get up off the mat and go after it again. That’s part of it.”

What Coach Stevens understands is that you have to pay your dues in life. It takes time to learn to win at that level.

I watched LeBron James’ interview after the game and his experience playing on the big stage was just oozing out of him.

But LeBron had to go through the trial by fire too.

I’m thinking about the last two years in his first stay in Cleveland. Those were bitter pills for him to swallow.

But swallow he did, and learn he did, and now he is arguably the greatest player to play the game

The other greatest player to play the game, Michael Jordan, also had some tough losses in his rise, notably to the three consecutive losses to the Pistons in 87-90.

Michael also learned from those bitter pills and went on to be the greatest clutch player in the game.

Of course, what is true in the NBA is also true in startup land.

There are no shortage of ridiculously talented young founders out there. We have a number of them in our portfolio.

But they too will find it challenging to step onto the big stage and deliver in crunch time. And their missteps will hurt too.

But as Brad Stevens said last night “everything is tough” and you can grit your way through it and come out the other side, battle-tested, and with rings on your fingers.

But there are no shortcuts in life for most of us.


Comments (Archived):

  1. David Lee

    Grit (per Angela Duckworth) is the hardest thing to evaluate, gauge and predict. Sometimes a person brings it to the table, sometimes they need to develop it along the way. You can’t look at the resume, product prototype, traction, etc. to project this. Some elite people have a glass jaw – crumble when first hit comes. Some not-so-elite people grow stronger with each adverse moment – they don’t shrink from the moment and view it as a growing opportunity. And then there are the MJ, Meryl Streep types that have elite talent and elite grit.

    1. BillMcNeely

      It can also come and ago. A guy might be a coward today and a hero tomorrow. Seen on the battlefield.

    2. Guy Lepage

      I feel grit is something I seem to come across quite often. I tend to find that around half the people I’ve met that are extremely passionate have true grit. It’s grit that usually have got them to me in the first place. I seldom take recommendations so that helps quite a bit.. No free rides.

    3. PhilipSugar

      Mike Tyson: “Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the face”

    4. cavepainting

      I also believe that true grit manifests itself only for a mission beyond the ego. Something that you love so much that you are willing to walk through walls to make it happen.This is why we say missionary founders >> Mercenary founders. Applies to all walks of life.

      1. PhilipSugar

        You know and that can be just loving the people you work with. I know that sounds sappy. But I can tell you, it is so fun to work with makers, and know something special each one does out of work.

        1. cavepainting

          yes, that’s very true. It need not be anything fancy or world changing. Many people do great things just for the fun of doing it, or a deep commitment to the job at hand. A great example is the work that so many Moms and Dads do every day around the world, to create a better life for their kids.

    5. TeddyBeingTeddy

      I’ll bite… How did Meryl Streep make the cut here?

  2. JLM

    .There are shortcuts, but you have to find the people who know them.You have to rent experience when you can. In three decades you learn stuff that new CEOs can implement.”When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.”JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

    1. JaredMermey

      Keeping with NBA theme…only (that I can remember) mega-stars to not pay dues in modern era to win championships are Magic (rookie year) and Duncan (second year). And they attached themselves to Kareem and David Robinson respectively.Best shortcut is apprenticeship.

      1. JLM

        .I would submit that they did exactly what I described.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

        1. JaredMermey

          what’s that line? I agree with you more than you agree with yourself?:)

    2. LE

      You have to rent experience when you can.I am curious what your opinion is of the line between help and turning into a crutch for someone (that allows them to develop in a different example ‘a lazy eye’).Help is absolutely needed on the battlefield, building a building or in the cockpit where a mistake can cause the loss of life. But in other cases always having someone that you can tap for the answers I personally see as being detrimental to development long term of being able to think on your own. A very delicate balance for sure. (One of those nuances that you don’t learn from reading books either).You don’t want to be someone’s mother. I say this observing my wife and how she helps my stepkids with things that I think they should be slogging through themselves. I think it’s the same with someone running a company. If you always have someone handy with the answers (that knows more than you do) how do you develop your own ability? And having to make decisions w/o help doesn’t mean making mistakes necessarily. It also means being careful and not taking as many chances and thinking things through a few times. Of course if you are not used to thinking that is going to be hard to do.

      1. sigmaalgebra

        One of those nuances that you don’t learn from reading books either. It depends on the book!For centuries a lot of people have gotten a lot of experience in life, formulated lessons, “paid full tuition”, and written down the lessons.Some of these lessons are about people and their personalities, proclivities, behaviors, etc. So, can (A) read the good books and learn right away or (B) get the experience on your own, “pay full tuition”, try to rediscover and reformulate the lessons on your own, and maybe be successful eventually. There is an old statement in computingIt is hardly possible to make progress in any field without standing on the shoulders of others. Some of the candidate lessons about people go way back, e.g., to Shakespeare and the Bible.A more modern formulation is in the phenomenon of goal subordination in organizational behavior.IIRC, you have mentioned that sometimes in marriage one or both of the spouses might change their mind.You mean to suggest thatWe together to join this man and this woman in the bonds of holy matrimony … to cherish, treasure, protect, love … for better or worse, richer or poorer, in sickness or health, forsaking all others ’till death do we part. sometimes is not taken seriously?How can you be so cynical, skeptical, doubting????Well you are not nearly the first such skeptic!! There is some strong evidence that people have had your doubts going way back! The understanding is so common that there is some famous opera that makes comedy of the situation:G. Verdi, Rigoletto, “La donna è mobile”, Luciano Pavarotti…with English translation:Woman is fickleLike a feather in the wind,She changes her voice — and her mind.Always sweet,Pretty face,In tears or in laughter, — she is always lying.Always miserableIs he who trusts her,He who confides in her — his unwary heart!Yet one never feelsFully happyWho on that bosom — does not drink love!Woman is fickleLike a feather in the wind,She changes her voice — and her mind,And her mind,And her mind!Can learn that lesson about some women the easy way from that opera or the hard way, paying “full tuition”, by rediscovering and reformulating the lesson on your own.I have a lot of lessons like that for a book Girls 101 for Dummies — Boys.

    3. Vasudev Ram

      >”When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.”Ha ha, nice one. This was a saying in ancient India (so I’ve heard from parents, relatives, etc.) about seekers of enlightenment, nirvana, whatever you want to call it.Update: Wasn’t expecting to hear that saying from you. Shows I wasn’t ready 🙂

    4. Cryptowire {BTC Class of 2013}

      “You reach, I teach.”…Respect you JLM. I’m thankful for our conversations around my final days at YourSports. You really helped me reach finality on a gordian knot. Thank you.But then you unfollowed me on the Facebook after our discussions around the Pee Pee Memo release. You reached.I’ll teach here for a second: Don’t unfollow those you can teach. – @chrisamccoy

  3. Richard

    Plenty of short cuts in sports. See the 1986 Mets.

    1. BillMcNeely

      See Lance Armstrong

      1. LE

        There is a way of thinking that says ‘better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all’. I am not advocating cheating in any way shape or form. No way. But otoh while Lance may not be the victor, Lance still has the spoils. In case you are wondering why people cheat. Because the ends are better than working in middle management at Rite Aid. Ditto for the fact that Elizabeth Holmes will probably end up in an ok position despite the massive fraud at Theranos. By the way the poster child of short cuts is Gates and that shitty Microsoft operating system that caused such aggravation. <– I will never miss a chance to repeat this and I really didn’t even suffer from using it.

        1. BillMcNeely

          It’s a fine line.Learning a lot about Elizabeth Holmes, Theranos and the strange make up of the board from the Bad Blood book. She is a decedent of Fleischmann’s Yeast Company founder and her father was in several government positions where he ran into the Drapers and others that put the first money in.

          1. LE

            The pattern here is what I call ‘the assumption of legitimacy’. It’s where people assume others have done the due diligence and/or something is blessed because of others who can be trusted to do the right thing. Having observed business for so many years I have come across countless examples of where this proves fatal. The earliest pattern was with the trusted bookeeper, secretary and what not. As a kid. And that was just the start. Also even people who start off honest can turn so you sort of have to keep up the ‘trust but verify’ shit.There was even a case years ago with my own accounting firm. Big name firm (merged into BDO). I had just sold my small company and the accounting partner (head of the firm) sold my services over the phone to another client. He said something like ‘sure he can be trusted and our other clients are happy with his services’. Now he had known me for many years (so the trust made sense I guess) but the ‘other clients’? WTF. This was the first time! And it just rolled off his tongue just like that. Of course it all worked out for the ‘other client’.Draper from what I heard knew Elizabeth because she was friends with his daughter. That is what I heard how it all started.I told the story of Draper here before. Back in the 90’s was watching him on some tv tech show. He didn’t sound that smart. I am not saying he isn’t smart just that he didn’t ‘sound’ smart. So my ex wife was there in the kitchen. I said to her ‘he doesn’t sound that smart’. She replies to me ‘yeah but he’s really good looking’. The next day I wrote him an email. I said ‘my wife says you are really a good looking guy’. That led to him inviting me for an interview to work at DFJ. Really happened. The minute those words rolled out of my ex wife’s mouth I knew I had an angle of approach to get into the airport with clearance. I never took him up on the interview though I bailed a few times decided it wasn’t for me.

  4. BillMcNeely

    You have to be willing to keep fighting, be persistent. Even when you think you crossed the finish line. Sometimes the goal posts get moved and you have to be willing to move with them.I wrote this piece below when I thought I crossed the finish line. Three weeks after arriving in Kenya/Uganda I was told I was not needed on a Wednesday. By that Friday, still overseas, I had an interview for that following Monday and the Monday after that, I started a new position.I am 9 years and 12 companies into my startup journey and I am just now getting to my first possible exit.

    1. Salt Shaker

      Your story is remarkable. Everyone on AVC should read Bill’s Medium post. I for one am rooting for you, bigly!

      1. PhilipSugar

        Could not agree more.

    2. cavepainting

      Takes a lot of guts to put it all out there. Loved the post and wish you the very best!

  5. Tom Labus

    You have to pay at some point. If not first out of gate then later. But it hurts a lot more later!!

  6. LE

    This is something that I firmly believe needs to be drilled into children while they are growing up. By the time they are in their 20’s it’s to late and maybe even in their teens. I consider myself particularly ‘abusive’ in this area. [1] That’s what others would say but I simply don’t agree with the traditional walk on eggshells thinking and go with what I believe in and what has worked for me (observation and practice) . To me the upside far outweighs the downside. And it’s a careful balance of positives, negatives and appropriate pressure.[1] I told my daughter while in 3rd year of college that she better get her ass in gear and have a good job lined up when she graduates. I said something that translated to “I don’t want to hear you are waiting tables or working at Starbucks and still looking”. And she did work and get a great job and called me yesterday all excited to tell me about her first sole client meeting. (Ditto for the other daughter, a bit older. I told her she is at her current job to long and needs to think about finding something else and not getting to comfortable. Don’t come to me to dig you out when you need money. And this takes particular guts since I am a ‘disney dad’). I put relentless pressure on them in their senior year. I didn’t let up. Don’t let me down in so many words. And they didn’t because they knew that it was important and it mattered to someone that was important to them.

    1. sigmaalgebra

      That’s strong medicine and maybe at times good or necessary. But the medicine is so strong that should give it only in teaspoons only occasionally, watching carefully to see all the effects, and not in coffee cups daily. That medicine can be fatal — literally.

      1. LE

        Well fwiw I have a constant program of monitoring the strong medicine and titrate it to reduce the side effects. I think that when people hear what I am doing (and might try and do the same) they don’t understand the care that goes into doing it exactly right and making adjustments if needed. The finer points of the manipulation. And that doesn’t mean it’s negative to do so.Here is one example. I was harsh (doesn’t matter why) on my my stepdaughter a week or two ago. I realized that I had said the wrong thing. Now most people would have apologized and left it at that. But I marched into her room, apologized, and then gave her some money (I paid a fine) in order to show her that I really meant it. [1] It definitely had the desired impact. I think the next time she will think ‘wow that was harsh maybe I will get money later again, great!’.[1] I then said to her jokingly ‘next time say to me ‘is that all??’ and negotiate a larger payout’. Think that doesn’t lighten things up a bit? It does.

        1. sigmaalgebra

          You work hard to get a lot of good insight into the subject of people and personality and do well, but it’s a darned challenging subject. You care a lot and are trying and working hard.As my brother explained once to me, with an exasperating summary of all of social science, psychological explanations before the fact have darned little predictive value — i.e., in simple terms are from bad science, weak advice, or just BS. And beware of the Halloween mask “face validity”, that is, what seems obviously true just on its face.I’ve seen some grand disasters, but I’m no expert on how to achieve success. On interventions or just inputs, about the best advice I could give would be to watch the effects, which apparently you are doing.Maybe some of what Fred is saying today, that sometimes it comes down just to grit, is in practice too often correct although my first post here tried to find something better.There are a lot of opinions on how to motivate; maybe a little of the very best from a few of the very best sources should be carefully considered — maybe. Did I mention maybe? Maybe.There are some remarks apparently relevant to motivation in E. Fromm, The Art of Loving. I got the Fromm reference from my brother; the book is well known in clinical psychology (his MS was in psychology, Ph.D. in political science). But before taking Fromm very seriously, get some better recommendations than from me.On interventions, there’s the old “First, do no harm.” no doubt learned at high cost, the hard way, “paying full tuition”.Maybe one of the most important factors (NOT necessarily in the mathematical sense of factor analysis) is anxiety and getting emotional, financial, etc. security against the anxiety. Maybe one of the best foundations for such security is in just the one old word, love. Apparently there are cases where love seems to have helped motivation and good results and not hurt them.One remark you will find in Fromm, maybe relevant, is that becoming an “adult” means becoming ones own parent, that is, telling oneself the good advice, etc. that as a child they got from their parents. So, one goal of a child in their teens and 20s is to do that.But in my life, I could have been helped a LOT in grade school, high school, college, and later by good advice. My parents wanted me to learn mostly on my own. Okay, maybe I have, but it’s slow, and the “tuition” can be darned high.While I can’t tell you how to save your daughters, I can give you a rock solid view of just what the heck it would be like for you to lose one of them:R. Wagner, Die Walküre, “Wotan’s Farewell”, James Morris, likely at NYC Met Opera conducted by James Levine:…Now it is YOU who is extra highly motivated!!!!!!And, this is what it will be like for you when one of your daughters tries to get your blessing to marry some guy she’s in love with:…And this is just like what it will be for your daughters when they have had their last love from you:Wagner, Götterdämmerung, “Siegfried’s death and Funeral march”, Klaus Tennstedt, London Philharmonic…Keep trying. I’m sure you are doing much, Much better than the averages.

    2. PhilipSugar

      I could not agree more. I have oft told the story of when I brought in stupid expensive ($5 each) that my assistant got me for my daughters kindergarten class. The principal looked at me and said: What do you do? and then she said: Do you think it is right to tell a kindergartner that not everybody is a winner, second place is the first loser?I told her yes. Right now figuring out what to do and how to act when you lose really has no consequence if you get it wrong. As Fred says, you can learn from it. It does when you get older. That is the beauty of sports.

  7. Anne Martin

    Love your post today!

  8. Salt Shaker

    Danny Ainge is quite a GM, and sort of dispels the notion that former players don’t make for good mgt (e.g., Phil, Willis, Isaiah). Remember, they’re doing this w/ out Kyrie. Players play, coaches coach, and GM’s build the foundation, while often they don’t get the credit when deserved. Only criticism when they fail.

    1. someone

      atually there was a long segment on espn last night about whether ainge is the MVP.i’d say yes

    2. Tom Labus

      And the Nets #1s. Oh my Nets.

    1. sigmaalgebra

      I know next to nothing about basketball. But back in the days of VCR, I recorded one of the NBA finals series where MJ and his team won. So watching some of that footage, e.g., at slow motion, it becomes clear that MJ is one unbelievably gifted athlete — the guy is beyond belief.Later on the Internet I saw a little Round Ball 101 tutorial with MJ: Again, even just in those 101 level lessons, the guy was from some other planet. Then I learned that he practiced and practiced and practiced, really cared, worked hard and smart. I’m sure all that helped a lot.If I were trying to guard him, he would, with ease and a big smile, make about three moves in less than one second, trick me into the nickel seats, and then do an effortless, grand slam dunk.

      1. pointsnfigures

        I knew some guys that played D-1 that played against him when they were in their 20’s. Jordan would tell them exactly what he was going to do before he would do it-“I am going to fake right, drive baseline, and dunk”. Then he’d say, “Are you ready?”. Then he would fake right, drive baseline and dunk on the guy. No one could stop him.

        1. PhilipSugar

          My best on that is Larry Allen O-line for Dallas. He would announce by making the sound of a train whistle that the running play was coming behind him. You want to talk about grit. Got sent to his Aunt/Uncle because he had some bad scrapes protecting his brother in Compton and eventually was badly stabbed.Tenth Lineman picked. Look at what his opponents would say: (also he had 4.5 speed and could bench 700lbs)…

  9. TeddyBeingTeddy

    Most only talk about their wins. The greats are open about their loses and lessons learned.

    1. PhilipSugar

      There is no more truth than this statement. You have to ask people when they got their ass kicked. If they never got their ass kicked……..they have never won.Litmus test for me.

  10. wca4a

    A friend sent me this quote by Gretzky where he describes losing to the Islanders dynasty his early in his career:”The loss in 1983 was a humbling experience for the up-start Oilers, who were young and confident. However, Gretzky credits that loss with teaching the Oilers what it takes to win. And in fact, the Oilers would ultimately win four of the next five Stanley Cups and five of the next seven.”We walked by their locker room in the corridor and saw after they won they were too beat up to really enjoy it and savor the victory at that moment,” said Gretzky. “We were able to walk out of their pretty much scot free. We had so much respect for the Islanders players and the Islanders teams that we learned immediately you have to take it to another level in order to win a Stanley Cup. And that’s what we did. We learned from it and often credit for the Islanders players and Islanders teams for teaching us exactly what it’s all about and how hard it is to win.”

  11. sigmaalgebra

    Yes, at times, life rains on you, throws, as we said in grade school, great green gobs of greasy gorilla grunt at you, and is unfair. People and/or cliques can attack you. People can deny you results you have earned, gossip and lie about you, lie to you, sabotage you, steal from you, try to manipulate and exploit you, etc.Okay.But likely it’s not you or your fault. Instead, a lot of that happens to nearly everyone not hiding in a cave. If you really were as bad as some say, then maybe the smart thing to do would be to hide in a cave. So, people need some ways to be sure they should continue on and not hide in a cave.One way to continue on is just to use “grit”. But, there’s another way:Say, in basketball, look at your free throw percentage, your field goal percentage, your 3 point percentage, your number of steals, rebounds, assists, your average points per game, etc. (A) If those look bad, then use the one word solution — “practice” — until they look good. (B) If those look good, then don’t let the critics convince you to hide in a cave. Either case, (A) or (B), don’t really need blind, uncompromising, single minded, oblivious “grit”.At times in school, I got dumped on. Then in the ninth grade I discovered that math was easy for me, much easier than for others. I still remember: The girls who were such teachers’ pets in grades 1-8, in the ninth grade suddenly were nothing short of just drop dead gorgeous and in math class sat in a long row next to the wall and struggled terribly with all of the subject. Amazing!!!Did I mention they were gorgeous? It was so SAD to see them so distressed — maybe to give them some feelings of security I should have hugged them and assured them that it would be okay!!! Naw: My experience is that sixth grade girls like ninth grade boys; ninth grade girls want nothing to do with ninth grade boys; ninth grade girls want a good college man athlete from a wealthy family!!!! Right, this is all non-PC!!!Then I learned another lesson: Given one or a few good books, I could teach myself math. The results were typically much better than I or nearly any students could do in a class but took more time than usually available in school with lots of classes. So, I did a lot of my learning outside of school, in evenings and weekends while on a job (applied math and computing for US national security near DC). Then when I went to grad school, I knew enough to have a big advantage.But some grad schools or departments, e.g., the one I went to, dump on students just for any reason or no reason. The places are darned destructive.Then I learned another lesson: Do some publishable research, something pretty good that any of the faculty would be pleased and proud to publish. So, I did. Took me two weeks of mostly sitting beside my wife on our bed as I did math and she watched TV. Part of the work solved a long outstanding problem in the famous Kuhn-Tucker conditions (Kuhn and Tucker were long at Princeton) and also solved a problem stated but not solved in the famous paper in mathematical economics by Arrow, Hurwicz, and Uzawa — right, Arrow won his Nobel prize long ago, and Hurwicz, in the last few years. In addition, the work had some surprising, intuitively astounding, results.In the department, that work gave me a Teflon coated, Kevlar covered, titanium formed umbrella against rain and everything else.Then, with the yapping dogs thusly fended off, for my dissertation research I continued with a problem I’d identified and partly solved before I got to grad school, did some more math, wrote some illustrative software, wrote and typed the thing, did the proof reading sitting beside my wife on our bed as she watched TV, and submitted it, all with no faculty direction. So, while I was doing the work, on my own, without faculty direction, the situation was “Look, Ma! No criticism!” Then when the work, the final typed copy, was done and seen to be good, still no criticism. I stood for an oral exam and got my Ph.D.The Chair of the orals committee was a Tucker student and Member, US National Academy of Engineering. One paragraph he didn’t quite understand, so I expanded it and made it a little more clear, and that was the only revision. One of my formal advisors, later President at CMU, had at least one of his grad students use some of my math in their Ph.D. dissertation. So, my work was seen as good.Lesson: (A) Have some good reasons to know that you are good enough to be out working to win and should not just retreat to a cave. (B) Do some good work. Get some good results, ones that can easily be seen as good by enough people. (C) Accept the praise, etc. from others that observe and admit that you did good work. In business, walk proudly into the bank and deposit the revenue checks.In simple terms, sometimes relevant, if the code is correct and runs, pleases users, and makes money, then whether you wrote the code (i) scared, scarred, desperate, with struggle, pains, and grit or (ii) or with ease, joy, and lots of moments of “eureka” might not have a lot to do with the final results.”Grit” is not really one of (A)-(C) here. Grit is certainly not sufficient, and it’s only a little of what is necessary. One example of what is sufficient is just (A)-(C). Since (A)-(C) are pretty obvious, don’t let anyone tell you that (A)-(C) are not sufficient and that necessary are grit, pain, suffering, scares, etc.

  12. JamesHRH

    The intensity delta seems to be the big issue: Home is such a High; Away is so Intense.And, the biggest thing that gets overlooked is that you need to do multi-layered adjusting to the officials, who are – sadly – affected more than anyone else by rabid home playoff crowds.Founders have the same issues – Home fans who have always had your back; Away fans who want you to veer from your instincts and Investors who call the game based on how they are feeling.Pretty good analogy.

  13. Rick Mason

    Before the “bad boys” Detroit Pistons prevailed against the Bulls they had to grind for several years against the Celtics. That Pistons-Celtic series was absolutely brutal. One positive from the Pistons-Bulls series is Michael Jordan realized the true value of Dennis Rodman. Jordan felt that Rodman was worth at least one game in a series, he said it didn’t show up on the stats sheet and called it the Rodman x-factor.

  14. jason wright

    Too many ancestors paid their dues, allowing their descendants not to. Dynasties are bad.

    1. sigmaalgebra

      Story of wealth in America: “Rags to rags in three generations”!

  15. Jay Sears

    You need humility, unshakable conviction and a good dose of humor to make it to the other side…!

  16. goldwerger

    Amen 😉

  17. Austin Rothbard

    I can relate to this post. For the past 25 years, I’ve been in corporate America. In fact, I ran 4 companies in the past 10 years, with between $20-500M in revenue. And now, of all things, I’ve started my own company. My experience dealing with just about everything – from IP infringement to plant shutdowns, vendor issues and firing dealers, innovation, and major layoffs – has prepared me well to start my own company.However, for some reason, there is a bias towards younger, less experienced talent. I’m not saying it’s wrong, but we don’t see that in any other industries. The basketball analogies apply within and outside sports. They apply with experienced physicians and professors, policemen, and business executives. But the startup world seems to have the opposite bias – the one towards younger, less experienced talent.Some recent research disproves this, but it is VERY recent (like within the last six months).Any idea why this could be?

  18. pointsnfigures

    I think it’s important to point out when you see greatness like LeBron, MJ, Magic, Larry, you don’t know what goes on behind the scenes. You don’t see the work they put in.I have played against a lot of great players in my day. There was a guy here in Chicago that was better than another guy on his team who played in the pros. They each had incredible talent. One put in the work, one didn’t. One had grit. One didn’t. One made it, one kept dreaming about finding the end of the rainbow.(BTW, how about that dunk by Harden in the 2ndQ last night? Impressive)

  19. Ian Hathaway

    I like this. I see Lebron as one of the most thoughtful public figures today — across any domain. He is wise and has grown into his role with grace. I’ve got to think those bitter pills shaped him not only at work, but as a man overall.