Roger L. Simon

"Hoop Dreams" revisited

Every time I post about Kobe Bryant on here, I get bombarded with negative email and comments. Seems as if I’m the only one who likes the guy (other than all those folks making his jersey the number one seller in the NBA again).

But the recent contretemps over Kobe’s diva-like behavior regarding his wish to be traded (as if) and the subsequent scurrying about by the Lakers to shore up their roster has sent my mind off in another (related) direction – how much money these dudes make. 64 million dollars in three years for Jermaine O’Neal??!!

It’s been thirteen years since the release of the documentary “Hoop Dreams,” which I liked a lot because I thought it was extremely well made and admired its message – that inner city youth were spending too much time aspiring to a career in the NBA and not enough time on something more realistic (like school). Unfortunately, like most well-intentioned movies, it apparently didn’t make much of a dent. And how could it – what with those salaries and the obvious corollary that playing basketball is probably a lot more fun than studying dentistry? Maybe we could Al Gore to make a doc about the perils of basketball – “Global Hoops!”