Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Knicks Forward Amar Stoudemaire Will Coach Canada’s Team in the Maccabiah Games

And Gives All of Us the Opportunity to Use the Wonderful, Overworked Cliché

[Editor’s note:  Before anyone gets upset, yes, The Dismal Political Economist is Jewish.]

The Maccabiah Games are sort of like an Olympics for Jewish Athletes.  Yes we know the idea of Jewish Athletes is the stuff that jokes are made of.  But let’s put an end to that silliness with two words, Sandy Koufax.

Canada is all excited because it will have the star forward of the New York Knicks, Amar Stoudemaire coaching its basketball team in the upcoming games.

For the eclectic Stoudemire — he also has written children’s books and is the subject of a documentary that will have its premiere April 19 on EPIX— the coaching role is new but the destination will not be.He visited Israel in 2010, shortly after signing a free-agent contract with the Knicks. That trip, he said then, was spiritual in nature.

Funny, he doesn't look
So it turns out that Mr. Stoudemaire is a fairly extraordinary person, not at all like the typical professional athlete.  It may be that he plays the game for fun, and is coaching because he actually enjoys teaching the game. And there is this.

The coming visit promises to be uplifting, too, especially if Canada earns the gold medal, something it last accomplished in 1997. But Canada has scored a coup just by getting a star of Stoudemire’s magnitude to Israel, especially one who professed in his previous trip that he believed he might be partially Jewish.

Partially Jewish huh, that’s great.  And yes on the left is the punchline everyone is waiting for.

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