- Joined Jul 5, 2002
Anyone have this entire article? Looks like a good read..
By Chris Broussard
ESPN The Magazine
This column appears in the March 22, 2010 issue of ESPN the Magazine.
We think of him as invincible. A warrior able to play throughanything: broken and dislocated fingers, excruciating back spasms,sprained ankles. We look at his age (31) and tireless work ethic andassume he'll give us four, five, maybe six more years of greatness. Weremember how Michael Jordan, Jerry West, Reggie Miller and Julius Erving thrived in their mid-30s and figure Kobe Bryant still has plenty of NBA basketball ahead of him. Maybe. But maybe not.
Back when the flood of high school players going into the NBA draftbegan, in the mid-1990s, a question circulated through the NBA's frontoffices: Would the teens have extra-long careers, or are all playerslimited to a certain number of NBA miles, regardless of when theodometer starts running? Now, as yesterday's prep phenoms becometoday's cagey vets, we're starting to see evidence of an answer. Inhip-hop parlance, 30 may be the new 20, but in the NBA, Jay-Z's mathdoesn't compute. The bodies of many of the prep-to-pros seem much olderthan their birth certificates would indicate. Even with the NBA's agelimit, one-and-dones may find themselves in the same state of prematuregraying one day.