From time to time, a seminal non-Northwestern sports event will come up, and some of the truer NU heads - the ones who wouldn't shut up about how we beat MSU while watching the championship game with friends, until halftime, when they started talking about how we beat FSU, who beat UNC, making us transitive property national champions once removed, and who made Youtube highlight reels of Super Bowl 42, except the only play featured is Barry Cofield's one unassisted tackle - might have trouble sitting through non-Wildcat sports related events. Well, that's what I'm here for. I'll be guiding you through seminal sporting events and providing them with a purple tint. Today, the NBA Draft.
The NBA Draft is like a holiday of sorts for me, and, considering its essentially all I've been able to think about for the last... oh, two weeks or so, I figure I had to somehow integrate it into this here blog I started during that time frame. Regardless of how tangential it is to NU sports.
Unfortunately, the odds are stacked against Northwestern. A Wildcat has never been selected with a first-round pick, and only one has been picked since 1986 - Evan Eschmeyer, the 34th pick in 1999. This year, nothing looks much different: in fact, although you can reach a page featuring Craig Moore's statistics on draftexpress.com if you try hard enough, attempting to reach his player profile ACTUALLY brings you to this page. But, forget those fools.
Let the haters hate. Sure, the draftexpress folks are experts in their field, highly respected, and think about the NBA draft for a living, but there's a lot of things they don't know. For example, last time I saw him, Craig Moore was not a massless void lacking physical characteristics, nor was he a gaping expanse of nothingness. And I doubt he's changed that much since March. And if the draftexpress people got that wrong, what can they possibly get right? The answer, of course, is very little. Be optimistic. Maybe the question the draft experts should ask isn't whether or not Craig will be drafted, but whether Sterling Williams, Pat Houlihan, and Marlon Day will follow suit.
Here's a guide how to enjoy a purple-tinted draft night, featuring two equally fun ways to watch the draft.
Northwestern-themed NBA draft-watching experience t:
A tip: invite guests over. Buy each one a customized Moore jersey from a different NBA team. Whoever gets the right jersey wins a prize! Burn any jerseys from teams which do not draft Moore immediately after the draft ends.. A truly devoted fan would do the same for Williams, Houlihan, and Day, but we're not all perfect.
If it's getting late in the draft, and no Northwestern players are getting picked, a good way to entertain your guests will be uncontrollably weeping.
Most mock drafts only project one pick out of the Big Ten, OSU's BJ Mullens. Make sure to tell everybody within earshot about how dominant Mullens was against NU, recording double-digit points in each of his two games and dropping a double-double in a losing effort against the Cats. Neglect to mention how bad he was in most other Ohio State games, how he's almost universally considered to be a likely bust candidate, and how a list of people guarding him in those two games contains, but is not limited to, Jeff Ryan, Davide Curletti, and Kyle Rowley.
Don't allow any of your friends to leave until the draft is over. People routinely stop watching after the first round, or sometimes the first 10-15 picks. Make your friends stay the entire time. Lock the door if you have to. Also, make sure not to stop uncontrollably weeping the entire time.
Don't put all your eggs in one basket, in the unlikely scenario that no NU players get drafted, we should hedge our bets. Very few people outside of NBA circles have heard of the French point guard (via Guadeloupe) Rodrigue Beaubois, and very few people who aren't NU fans watched Wildcat games last year - we had what, 4 national TV games, including the NIT? - point being, if we all simultaneously pretend that Beaubois attended NU instead of playing professionally in France, who's going to contradict us? Beaubois? He speaks heavily accented english. Ric Bucher? Doctors recommend that he stay away from a poorly ventilated arena like Welsh-Ryan within 36 hours of his most recent Botox injection, and I'm pretty sure he gets one every 38 hours or so. And Chad Ford probably hasn't seen an NU game since he realized he would get paid the same amount to take European vacations, say that some 7 foot tall dude from Eastern Europe has what it takes to make it in the league, and hope nobody notices he's borderline unable to walk. So, what I'm saying, is I think we're in the clear on pretending Rodrigue Beaubois is from NU.
If you choose to serve hors d'oeuvres or cocktails at your Northwestern-themed NBA draft party, make sure not to uncontrollably weep into them. Doing so is a common Northwestern-themed NBA draft party faux pas.
Worst case scenario: the 60th pick passes, and its not any of our four ex-Cats. Remind everybody about the success our undrafted NFL free agents had signing with good chances to make rosters, and talk about how many opportunities there are for players to make NBA rosters: summer league, training camp, etc. etc.
Eventually, after the draft ends let your friends leave. Make sure that you are still uncontrollably weeping at this point to make a lasting impression. Remember to wish them a good night as they leave!
Northwestern-themed NBA draft watching experience 2:
Don't watch the NBA draft.