76ers point guard Michael Carter-Williams—who is likely going to be back in the lineup for Philadelphia tonight after missing the first few weeks of the 2014-15 NBA season with a shoulder injury—just wrote a piece for The Players' Tribune called "Don't Talk to Me About Tanking." In it, he talks about how hard it was to go through a 26-game losing streak last season and details exactly how painful it is to play for a losing NBA team.
"Losing sucks," he writes. "I don't care how much money you make or what stats you put up."
But he also reveals the one thing that can always turn his frown upside down, even when his team isn't doing well. That thing? An episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show. He writes about how he puts basketball to the side for an hour every day and watches Ellen with his stepdad.
"I just think she's awesome," he writes. "So every weekday at 4 p.m., my stepfather and I pause the basketball talk, grab some snacks, and watch The Ellen DeGeneres Show. It might sound funny, but this is one of the ways I'm able to get away from the frustration of losing."
Elsewhere in the piece, MCW writes about all of the reporters who were gathered at the 76ers game against the Pistons back on March 29 when they were in the midst of their 26-game losing streak. They were there to see if the Sixers were going to set an NBA record by losing their 27th straight game. And in his piece, MCW calls ESPN's Stephen A. Smith and other reporters out for showing up specifically for that game in an effort to profit off the Sixers' misery.
"The media creates this narrative and repeats it over and over," he writes. "That's how Stephen A. Smith ends up in our locker room with a big smile on his face. But I'm not picking on him. I know he's playing a character. He knows he's playing a character. But what happens when we break the streak by going out and beating Detroit that night? Now it's another story."
You can read MCW's entire piece here. It'll change your perspective on the idea of NBA teams tanking and maybe, just maybe, change your perspective on Ellen, too.
[via The Players' Tribune]