Christian Living

thefinishline 04/06/10

Butler: Almost a Hollywood Ending

By Shawn Brown

Okay, so there I was on the edge of my seat with the rest of the crowd as Butler’s Gordon Hayward’s 3-point attempt catapulted into the air with just a few seconds left in the game. Most of us were already in disbelief because the Bulldogs, who were clearly the underdog going in, were pulling no punches against the Blue Devils. They were neck and neck with them for the entire game. I believe the belief started when Shelvin Mack drains a 3 just before halftime, reducing the Blue Devils’ lead to 1. The 2nd half was like watching a tennis match at the U.S. Open… back and forth across the net until somebody falls short of catching the ball with their racket. It was Butler, Duke, Butler, then Duke again. The lead switched about 10 times just in the first half. Arguably, this is one of the best championship games in the history of college basketball. And the best part was the posture of some of the players on both the winning and losing teams. Here are a few of the quotes:

# 20 Gordon Hayward (G/F)
“It’s not like it’s the end of the world. That’s the biggest thing. God’s blessed us this whole season, so it’s great to have Him to lean back on and realize that the sun’s going to come up tomorrow and we’ll move on. But it is obviously tough right now.”

#5 Ronald Nored (G)
“I told someone earlier this week that my dad, who is a pastor, said, ‘Always hold your head high.’ You know, no matter what the circumstances. He grew up in a town very poor. He went through cancer for a year and never dropped his head. The kind of guy he was and just the faith he instilled in me, I can’t hang my head about this.”    

#5 Mason Plumlee (F)
“It’s a blessing. Balls could have bounced different ways. We were just fortunate, and like you said, it is a blessing. You’ve got to be humble about it and just grateful, because this could be anybody really.”

#3 Seth Curry (G)
“I’m happy because I know how hard we’ve all worked all year in practice and everyday just to get to this point, to actually get here and to actually win it. I mean, as a player as hard as I work, and as hard as I play, I may never get back again. So I’m trying to enjoy the moment.”  

#2 Nolan Smith (G)
(On how it makes him feel to win this championship for his father whom he lost when he was just a young boy)
“It’s really hard to say. I’m speechless. You know, this is something that is really special to myself and my family, to my mom, my sister. I’ve seen them up there with tears on their faces. You know, father and son can win a championship in the same city.”
Give Now