Knocked Out And Still A Champion

By Reginald Williams

Let's not sugar coat it. Nate Robinson's mouth wrote a check that his ass was unable to cash.

Leading up to the Nov 28, fight against Jake Paul, Robinson - the 3-time N.B.A. Slam Dunk champion, talked mad trash about how he would trash Paul.

"I want all the smoke. I'm a top-tier athlete. You beating me would probably be the biggest accomplishment for your boxing career, or social media influencer - whatever. That's your biggest claim to fame right now is knocking out Nate Robinson, so come do it. I'm putting my everything on the line for you. Let's get it done. It's that simple," so said Robinson

However, what had happened was, Robinson, hit in his temple in the first round, experienced an unanticipated nightcap one round later.

Robinson's second-round knockout may very well have him in the history book once again. The undefeated internet is well on its way to making Robinson the slam dunk champion of memes. Here are a few of the hilarious memes:

"Damn, I'm tired as hell. I'm finna go Nate Nate."

"What happened to Nate was a Pauling."

"He's already dead."

While a good portion of the sporting world has shared a robust laugh at Robinson's expense, I have a great deal of respect for him. Robinson climbed into a foreign arena. He committed to doing something novel, and in that attempt, he was put to sleep for the world to see - and eventually make fun of. But what's more tragic than Nate's knockout is the degree of people who have not an ounce of courage to step into a ring and try their hand at some new venture.

Many of the folks laughing at Robinson will never get knocked out by an opponent; instead, they'll self-TKO - relegating themselves to some safe corner of their mediocrity. You see, the thing about chasing greatness is it is filled with disappointing moments. Warriors striving for greatness will often stumble and sometimes get knocked out by fierce punches thrown at their winning attempts. LeBron James is a 4-time N.B.A. champion, but he's been to the Finals 10 times. In-Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals versus the Utah Jazz, Kobe Bryant, a rookie playing for the Los Angeles Lakers, shoots 4 air balls in 5 minutes. Bryant stepped into a playoff ring with little experience and took his shots at greatness. After that humiliating performance, Shaquille O'Neal, Bryant's teammate, told the 18-year-old. "Look at all these people laughing at you. One day they will be calling your name. Cash in and learn from it.” And Michael Jordan, to whom many consider the G.O.A.T., never tasted defeat in a championship series. Still, for seven years, the Boston Celtics and Detroit Pistons knocked Jordan out of playoff contention on an annual basis.

As you laugh at “Nate Nate,” ask yourself this: how many young Kings will never step into a ring of opportunity because (1) they are scared; choosing to believe they can’t be successful, and (2) they don’t want anyone laughing at their failed attempt?

Robinson didn't win, but the dude has the heart and guts of a champion. In talkin' trash to Paul, Robinson said, "I'm putting my everything on the line for you." Real talk - he ain't the one you should be laughing at - especially if you’re comfortably sitting ringside. When have you been prepared to put everything on the line? It’s sad when someone’s misfortune serves as someone else's entertainment. DAMN!!!!

I’m betting that Robinson will “learn from it and cash in.” Much respect KING ♚ !!!