A Shot for the Ages?

December 5, 2005 at 10:53 pm Leave a comment

A Duke student put up a clip of Dockery’s mirculous shot yesterday night. There’s a link at the bottom of this post if you want to download it. Anyways, watching the shot a few times gave me a greater awareness of the luck involved. It was not even a shot, but a “chuck” from nearly mid-court. Yet, people, all through today, are talking about it being a shot for the ages. I think, at this point, the jury is still out. The formula is usually Big play + big game = history. There is no doubt Dockery’s shot was a big play, but it’s unclear whether it was truly a big game. It was still early in the season. Virginia Tech is no pushover as a member of the ACC conference. I, honestly, don’t think we would’ve dropped that far in the polls. Michigan State already has two losses on the year, one to a strong Gonzaga team and the other, in lopsided fashion, to a mediocre Hawaii team. MSU is ranked 14th. A loss to VT may have put us at 10th – 13th, largely because it was on our home court. This drop is really trivial because, it is still early in the season and we have a number of games against tough opponenents to climb back up, like the matchup against #2 Texas next weekend. Last year, North Carolina lost early in the season to Santa Clara, a relative no-name in Division-I basketball. But with the strength of the ACC schedule, they were able to recover to reclaim #1 and win a national chamipionship. There was no reason that if Duke lost last night, it wouldn’t have been able to do the same. Given, the ACC is a weaker conference than it was last year because of the departure of veteran players on key teams, namely North Carolina, Wake Forest, Georgia Tech, NC State. But all these teams with the exception of Georgia Tech are still ranked not to mention that BC, #6 currently, joined the ACC over the summer. The point is that the game against VT was a loseable game. Laettner’s shot was during the NCAA tournament. No games, at that point, were loseable. A loss would’ve meant elimination. That is not to say that Dockery made any less of an amazing shot because of the game’s low stakes. But it does make the shot more dispensable in terms of our memory and the history books. Plug Dockery’s shot into the formula and I’m not quite sure what you get. Big play + small game = ? Maybe a few Sportscenter reels and a clip on Ebaumsworld. I think the ultimate test is whether remember Dockery and his heroics are remembered after finals and winter break. And the answer is sad, but sure: Probably not. When we fly or drive back to Durham in the January chill there will be many things on our minds: new classes, telling friends about our break, buying textbooks, rushing and pledging. But Dockery and his 40 foot chuck will not be one of them. It will be a afterthought, mere scribbling on the wall of the cavern that is our minds.

Here’s the link if you were a bum and slept through the game like my roomate.

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Entry filed under: Sports.

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