I was born and raised in the DC area. My entire life I've considered the Skins my favorite sports team. I was young when the Skins won their three championships and that formed a lifelong bond. I've also always been a basketball fan, I played basketball in HS and have gone to Bullets/Wiz games since I was a kid. As long as I can remember the Wiz have been firmly entrenched as my second favorite team.
This summer something very strange is happening. I'm honestly more excited about the Wiz's season than the Skins. I think the Wiz are becoming my favorite team. I can't fully explain why. It's a little odd because even if the Wiz reach their full potential this year I see their highest possible season ceiling as a 2nd round playoff team, whereas if the Skins max out their potential, they could be in NFC championship game or the Super Bowl. Given those predictions you would think I would be more excited about the Skins but I'm totally geeking out on the Wiz this summer. Am I crazy? Is this happening to anyone else?
I've tried to figured out why I'm becoming such an avid Wiz/NBA fan and I think these are some of the reasons:
1. It's easier to become a "next level" NBA fan than an NFL fan. Once you start tracking every personnel decision, player salaries and thinking critically about how the respective front offices construct their teams, it's easier to track that information in the NBA. Part of the reason is simple, there are fewer players and salaries to track if you're following an NBA team. I don't know what every Redskin player makes, and I don't care enough to learn, there are too many guys and their salaries aren't guaranteed.
2. It's easier to evaluate NBA players than NFL players. I think we all believe we can judge NBA talent pretty well. There are only ten players on the court at an time, so you can follow them pretty closely. I think I'm a decent judge of NFL talent but only at the "skill" positions. I don't think I could "scout" an NFL lineman. If an offensive lineman makes a pancake block I can point to that and say, "hey, that guy awesome" but that's about it. There are a lot of NFL positions (especially, special teams positions) that I don't know very much about when it comes to technique, strategy, etc.
3. Basketball is a simpler game. I love the complexity and nuance of the NFL but since I care about forming fully informed rational opinions about my teams, it's easier for me to do so with the Wiz than the Skins. That's not to say I don't form strong opinions about the NFL, but I put greater stock in NBA opinions because I know more about the sport.
4. Finally, and I think this one is more of a personal opinion, I relate more to NBA players than NFL players. Maybe part of it is because they don't wear helmets and I feel like I "know" NBA players better. When I see NBA players speaking and being interviewed, I have thoughts like, "that guy thinks like I do" or "I would of said something like that" much more often than when NFL players are interviewed.
I didn't mean any of this to be an anti-NFL post. I still love both teams. I was just trying to figure out why I've gotten so excited about the Wiz lately.