Their Love for the Game

December 13, 2011
Their Love for the Game

Mr. Smith was in the room when his wife was having their first kid. Mr. Smith has always wanted a boy ever since the two of them started thinking about having kids. He wanted a boy who could follow in his footsteps and be an amazing basketball player like he was. Mr. Smith was one of the best basketball players in the nation when he was in high school. He got recruited by top notch colleges to go play for them.
Mr. Smith wasn’t just a good athlete, what really set him apart from everyone else was his brain. He was always number one in his class even in college. In college he was one of top players around the world, and was a player that every pro team wanted. Mr. Smith had to make a decision, though. Did he want to play professional basketball or did he want to be one of the top lawyers in the world? He chose being a lawyer over basketball simply because he didn’t want to be away from his wife all of the time. He still loves the game of basketball and that will never go away, but he sometimes wonders what life would have been like if he had played basketball instead of being a lawyer. Would he still be married? Would he and his wife be having a baby right now? All he knew was that he wants his son to play basketball, and he wanted his son to be the best at it.

The baby has been born for a few days and Mr. and Mrs. Smith have already given him a name. His name is Ray Allen Smith. His father named him this because Mr. Smith’s favorite basketball player is Ray Allen. Mr. Smith had gone out and bought his son a whole bunch of memorabilia of Ray Allen because he wanted Ray’s favorite player to be who he was named after.
Ray has been wearing Ray Allen clothing for nine years now and he is about ready to go to his first basketball camp. He has been playing basketball with his dad on little hoops for a few years, and has listened to everything his father has told him. The camp that he is going to isn’t a very big one, but it is one that Ray’s dad had been to in the past and Mr. Smith thought it was very helpful.
Ray arrived at camp, and he noticed that everyone was bigger than him. This was very intimidating to him, especially at such a young age. He thought that he was going to be the worst one there because of that, and because every other kid at the camp had flashy gear on like headbands, wristbands, or even shooting sleeves. All Ray had was his tennis shoes and his basketball. Mr. Smith didn’t want to be one of those dads who got everything that would make his son look like he was best person on the court. He wanted Ray to know that it’s not about what you wear when you play, but it’s just about how you play. Camp was about to begin and Ray had no idea what to do when it did.

Camp began by everyone gathering and the instructor giving orders. He sent each age group of students to a different basket to get ready to do some drills. Everyone started and Ray realizes something. He realized that he was better than these kids. They may look like they are good, but Ray knew he can beat them. He took advantage of every weakness everybody had and he easily stood out as the best player in his age group. Camp ended and Ray was so excited about how good he did that he ran to his dad and celebrated. Mr. Smith took Ray home and Ray told him everything that happened. He couldn’t have been more proud of his son.

Years pass and Ray is a freshman in high school. He is easily the best one on the team. There is one problem though, he is only a 5’10 guard and he is in division 1 basketball. How on earth was this ever going to work? Everybody else on court is always over 6 feet, and they are always getting scouted by top college schools to go play basketball for them. Everyone on the team towers over him, but Ray still makes playing basketball look easy in practice. Practice has been going good, and the team is definitely ready for the first game.

Game day is here and Ray is nervous. Never playing against competition like this before means he doesn’t know what to expect. Mr. and Mrs. Smith are at the game, and are excited to see what Ray can do against people he is playing for the first time. The team runs out for warm-ups, and Ray gets excited from all the noise the fans are making. His name gets announced for being one of the starting five and the crowd goes nuts. Everybody in the stadium is pumped to see what this freshman can do. His team won the tip-off and it landed right in the hands of Ray. He is in control now. It’s his offense, and he has all the freedom in the world to call whatever play he likes. He wanted the ball, so he called his own number for the very first possession. Ray wanted to show everybody what he can do when the basketball is in his hands. The team got in position with four people down near the baseline. This means that Ray has his guy one on one and the defender has no idea what to expect. Ray crossed-over, and then went behind his back in order to beat his defender to hoop. Once he did that there was no stopping him from scoring. Ray put up a shot from the elbow, and it went straight through. The crowd went absolutely berserk. Ray loves this feeling, it’s the feeling that he is doing something that everybody is watching him do, and he loves it. He loves being in the spotlight, and he loves putting the team on his back more than anything. He is definitely in the moment and his father can tell.
Mr. Smith flashes back to when he played his first game in a varsity uniform. He was the one who set the school record for most points scored in a single game as a freshman. In fact, Mr. Smith set the record for most points scored in a single season for freshman. Part of Mr. Smith wants Ray to break those records, yet part of him wants Ray to come up short. He would be very proud if Ray broke them, but he is proud of himself for setting them.
The game goes on Ray finds it easier to make decisions, and he finds it easier to get to the basket and score. Now is the moment that he realizes he is truly the best out on the court. There is nobody on the other team who can guard him, and everybody in the stands knows it. The final buzzer went off and the game wasn’t even close. Ray ended up scoring 52 points in the game. He had 12 assists, and 5 rebounds to along with the points. He beat his dad’s record in points for a single game and his parents couldn’t be more proud.

Games fly by and Ray is playing like a beast. Is there anyone in the world that can stop this kid? Who knows, all anybody knows is that Ray can play basketball, and word was getting around. Scouts are starting to drop by at games and watch Ray play to see if he is for real. Ray loves getting all of this attention, and loves that everybody is talking about him. He has coaches from Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Carolina, Duke, Kentucky, and all other sorts of teams coming to watch him. Some people ask, “How does this kid handle all of the pressure?” Well it’s really simple, Ray has a gift. He’s got charisma, and he has the smarts to know what to say at what time.

More years have passed and it’s more of the same. It’s Ray’s senior year and he has become the best player in the country. Nobody can beat him on the court, and off the court he is one of the smartest kids in his class. He is so smart that he even has Harvard and schools like that looking at him. Another thing that Ray and his father have in common is that Ray has a girlfriend. The two of them agreed that they are going to go to the same college to stay with each other. Now, it’s just about the college that Ray choses to go to. He sat down one night and went over the colleges that he wants to go to. It is down between Wisconsin, Duke, and Kentucky. These three schools have always been well known for their basketball and academics. He sat down by himself in his room, and was in there for hours. That itself is enough to prove that this is one of the toughest decisions he is ever going to make in his life. Finally, Ray came out of his room with his decision. He told his parents, “I have decided that I want to commit to the Wisconsin Badgers.” He has always been a Badgers fan, and in the final moments of deciding where to go he couldn’t think of a better fit for him.

Even more years have passed, and Ray is a senior in college. He and his girlfriend love Wisconsin, and the two of them plan to get married soon. Ray isn’t sure if he wants to go pro, or if he wants to go into a career like his father did. Ray’s wife had said to him, “If it was up to me, you would be getting a job like your father did. However, I wouldn’t mind all that much if you do decide that you want to keep playing basketball.” His senior year at Wisconsin is over and he has to make a decision. He wasn’t sure how to go forth with the situation so he asked his dad for advice. His father told him, “I love the life that I have, and I would never take it back for anything in the world. But, sometimes I do think back and wonder what life would be like if I had gone pro.” Ray thought about this long and hard. He had to talk his girlfriend about it, and make his decision with her. The two of them talked about it for hours, and a conclusion was made. Ray is going to go pro.

Years later Ray is a superstar in the pros, and he plays for the Milwaukee Bucks. Ray and his wife are still married and have kids of their own. He couldn’t be happier with the decision that he and his wife made. Ray’s parents still try and make every game that is possible. Mr. Smith couldn’t be more proud of Ray, and still thinks about what his life would be like if he had gone pro just like Ray.





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