Basketball and Classic Rock got me through junior high. Now, clandestine twitter updates and blasting 106.9 the Eagle (“The Four States #1 for Classic Rock”) gets me through work.
The other day I was driving my truck, enjoying the balmy weather, buzzing from caffeine and daydreaming about how I was stoked that such an old guy like Steve Nash could make the all star team. The radio started blasting the Bob Seger classic,“Beautfiul Loser/Traveling Man.” And I mentioned to my groggy co-worker sitting shotgun, “Man, I wonder if Seger is ever going to lose his mojo. I totally regret not going to see him a few months back.”
And then it struck me.
There is some major classic rocking happening on in the NBA right now. While the young guns are waiting paitently, many of the old guys don’t want to head in to the sunset just yet.
As with any industry there are those who bring it every night and those who should just call it quits right now.
For better, for worse these players/musicians are still rocking it in 2012
Steve Nash – Bruce Springsteen
Both of these guys have been playing out of their minds lately. The Phoenix Suns’ lone 2012 NBA All-Star is leading the NBA in assists and shooting 56% from the field. Bruce still rocks like he is back in Asbury Park, NJ. A new album set to drop in March and a large tour to follow. It’s his sixth album in twelve years.
Both of these guys are romantic souls at heart. Steve has a loyalty usually reserved for Golden Retrievers.
And a single tear rolls down my cheek every time I hear Bruce sing Thunder Road.
Tim Duncan – Neil Young
Both of these guys are ubiquitous. Tim Duncan has made 13 all star games and won 4 rings. Neil Young has made 34 albums. They are not the most exciting guys in the industry, but they consistently put out quality work.
Grant Hill – Bob Seger
Hill’s career retrospective might as well be played to a Seger song. Even though Seger and Hill come from different backgrounds they both have demonstrated a work ethic that is second to none. Both Bob and Grant have not forgotten where they came from and fans respect that. Grant always keeps it classy and remains professional. And I’ll never turn off a Bob Seger song when it comes on the radio. I like “Roll Me Away” as a Grant Hill retrospective song.
Vince Carter – Van Halen
I went through a Van Halen phase in eighth grade. I put “Jump” on repeat in my discman during my 45 minute Bus Ride. And “Why Can’t This Be Love?” was the song that got me through my first rejection from a girl.
I also went through a Vince Carter phase at the time. My brother collected Kobe Bryant cards and I collected “Vinsanity”. There was one particular card image that still sticks in my head. It had Vince dressed up in full camo gear with the words “Sargent Carter” below it. I thought it was the coolest card ever and I totally thought Vince would be much better than Kobe.
Today, that notion seems kinda silly. Just like the prospect of a drama free Van Halen reunion.
Jason Kidd – The Rolling Stones
These two are in the upper echelons of point guards and rock and roll, respectively. However, they don’t seem to want to fade in to the sunset gracefully. Kidd hasn’t shown the ability to play consistently with the new class of point guards. Regarding the Stones, I don’t know too many sixty-ish year olds who should still be prancing around in leather pants.
Kevin Garnett/Paul Pierce/Ray Allen – The Who
Both the Big Three and The Who have a proud tradition of screaming.[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekQtShe8954[/youtube] [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GgcetaNH_48[/youtube] [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wcz_kDCBTBk[/youtube]
Tracy MacGrady- Lynrd Skynrd
Reinventions, replacements, and revivals. That could be the title of Tracy Macgrady’s biography or a Lynrd Skynrd tour. T-Mac morphed from lead scoring machine to quiet bench contributor.Lynrd Skynrd’s “God and Guns” tour sounds much more dire than the “Sweet Home Alabama” most casually fans identify the band with. Skynrd has replaced multiple band member over the years. T-Mac basically needs his knees replaced. Skynrd is still touring, reviving the brand. The “T-Mac Hall of Fame Resume Tour” has made a stop in Atlanta. We’ll see how the show plays out
Chauncey Billups- Electric Light Orchestra
Are these two overlooked by conventional fans? Probably. Is there debate on whether they belong in the Hall of Fame? Yes.
Except it is hard to find anyone who wouldn’t want Chauncey Billups on their team. And it’s hard not to dance when “Don’t Bring Me Down” comes on the radio.
Greg Ostertag – Huey Lewis and the News
I giggle anytime I come across either of these guys.
Too bad Ostertag abandonded his basketball comeback. However, you can catch Huey Lewis and the News March 4th at the Downtown Concert Series in Orlando, Florida.
And if nothing else, both of these guys reminded us that it’s hip to be square.
For even more fun, follow me on Twitter @nickhansenMN
discussion by Sidelines