SFF – sports friends forever

Wow, did I just channel P. Hilton and L. Lohan?  🙁

Playing sports, especially team sports, gives us the opportunity to come together for a time to share challenges, work together to get better to overcome those challenges, and then hopefully, achieve the success we so desired. And to have a lot of fun doing all of that. There aren’t too many times or opportunities in life where those dynamics converge.

Part of the beauty of that convergence, sourced from playing sports, is the connection we have with teammates. From the first practice as a 7-yr old soccer, baseball, or lacrosse player to the final game with a high school or college team, we share experiences of winning and losing, of car and bus trips, of practices in the rain, and the desire to reach goals, both at a team and individual level.

Now these sports friends may not be your lifelong “best” friends. Those “best” friends may be those who you were in class with, who played other sports, or with whom a different connection was made and continually built upon, to get you to this day.

However, sports friends are special, friends who, no matter how long its been, you immediately associate with your experiences as teammates.  And those rich memories just come flooding back!

As teammates, we are most easily identified by the common uniform we wear but it is the collection of experiences, individually, and collectively that bind us together, long after we have stopped wearing that uniform.

There is a piece from CNN contributor Bob Greene, “The best friendships never die,” that captures these ideas even more eloquently in his discussion of the 1960 Ohio State basketball team and three of its stars, Larry Siegfried, Jerry Lucas, and John Havlicek.

And if you are curious about the pictures included, they are of the great club soccer team I was fortunate to be on growing up (Rockville Centre (NY) Red Devils!). First, our team photo after winning an international youth tournament in Holland in 1984, and our reunion of that win and others, from August 2009.