Phoenix Suns head coach Monty Williams (left) with assistant coach Willie Green during Game 5 of the NBA Finals against the Milwaukee Bucks at Phoenix Suns Arena in Phoenix, Ariz., July 17, 2021 (Mark J. Rebilas / USA TODAY Sports) On surmounting tribalism; the vax wars; J. K. Rowling; Norwegian handballers; writers who understand you; and more
America is beset by tribalism, a poisonous partisanship: red camp, blue camp, and never the twain shall meet. On July 1, President Biden met with Florida governor Ron DeSantis. The governor, as you know, is a Trump-style Republican, and Biden is an old-school Democrat. They discussed the disastrous collapse of a residential building in the Miami area.
Some people on both sides objected to this meeting of red and blue, or blue and red. I both heard this, in my little sector of life, and read it.
Well, if anything can be tribal, sports can, right? Sure. I am a Detroit Tiger, Lion, Piston, and Red Wing, born and bred. And ever shall be. Still, there is such a thing as — the conduct of Monty Williams.
He is the coach of the Phoenix Suns, who lost to the Milwaukee Bucks in the NBA Finals earlier this week. Check out this headline: “Suns head coach Monty Williams visited the Bucks’ locker room minutes after losing the title to congratulate them in a stunning display of sportsmanship.” (Article here.)
Williams told the Bucks that he did not want “to take away from” their celebration. No, “I just wanted to come and congratulate you guys, as a man, as a coach. You guys deserved it, and I am thankful for the experience.”
Tyler Lauletta, the author of the article I have linked to, commented as follows:
After a win, sportsmanship is the easiest thing in the world, but real sportsmanship comes when things didn’t go your way.
The Bucks are champions, but Williams set an example for the rest of the NBA on Tuesday night.
Yup. Maybe for the country at large, too.
• Patrick Chovanec, the econ whiz and all-around smart
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