Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Falling Out Of Love With Basketball

Filipinos, for some strange reason, love basketball. You can throw a stone anywhere in the country and it would hit someone who is a fan. From the fanciest of places to the most rural of settings, you can find someone playing basketball. It could be in a gym, basketball court, or on a makeshift court on the street where people are playing in their slippers. That is how much basketball is loved in the country.

Image by Darek Beach from Pixabay

I grew up in a family full of basketball fans. Watching the PBA (Philippine Basketball Association) on TV was a regular family activity. We all had our favorite teams and our favorite players. I was also a huge fan of college basketball, and I was serious about it too. I followed the games, and I was usually the type who would be screaming my heart out in the stands in support of my favorite team. I also had an NBA team that I was a major fan of, and I used to watch their games religiously.

Sometime after college, I suddenly lost my interest in basketball. I do not know how to explain it, but I just got to the point where I did not care about the sport the way I used to. It was weird since this was the time when people I knew from school were playing in the PBA. You would think that a personal connection to the sport would be enough to keep me interested but unfortunately, that was not the case.

These days, I am not familiar with the players in both the PBA and the NBA. I do not even know the names of the PBA teams anymore. It feels strange considering that I even had posters of basketball players on my wall when I was a kid.

I tried to get back into being a fan of the sport, watching PBA and NBA games on TV whenever I had the chance, but I could not get the excitement that I used to feel back again. I thought it was because I was also watching other sports at the time like boxing and football, or sports in general were not as important to me as they used to be. It was sad to think about since I loved basketball so much for so long. Do I need to find a team to root for to get that thrill back?

The excitement of watching a game is lost on me these days, but I still have an appreciation for the sport. I recently watched an NBA game on TV, and I am still in awe whenever I see a player or team play well. I still love seeing a good play, a good assist, or a shot when I watch a game. I still enjoy watching a basketball game if it is good, but the thrill I used to feel with the experience is just not there anymore. It does not help that the family is not as into basketball these days either. They still watch games, but they are not as big on the fandom as they used to be either.

I am not sure if it is just me, but the PBA does not seem as popular as it used to be, not like the way it was when I was younger. It is likely because there are so many other basketball leagues that have sprung up through the years. It is also possible that the pandemic changed people’s priorities. Or it could also be because of the recent popularity of volleyball in the country. Philippine basketball just feels different these days. I cannot even bring myself to watch a UAAP basketball game anymore no matter how excited people can be about it.

I may not be a basketball fan anymore, but I will always have a soft spot for it. The sport has given me so many good memories as a fan growing up. The excitement when your team is fighting for a win, the heartbreak of a loss, and the frenzy that happens when your team wins are memories that I will always have as a (former) basketball fan. Hopefully one day I can enjoy watching it again. 

We talked about the sports we like to watch in an episode of the Fandesals, where I also talked about being a basketball fan. You can check it out here:


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