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Thursday, Dec. 18, 2014

A reality check

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Sometimes it takes advice from an unlikely source to get people thinking right.

That's what happened for NBA player Terrence Williams recently.

The 11th pick in 2009, Williams had fallen out of Nets' coach Avery Johnson's good graces so much that he was actually sent to the team's D-League affiliate, the Springfield Armor, for a three-game stint.

Not surprisingly, Williams played phenomenally well, averaging 28 points, 11.3 rebounds and 10.7 assists.

What was surprising is that Williams seems to have taken the advice of a 13-year-old ball boy to heart.

According to Williams, he asked Carlos Gonzalez Jr. if he watched the NBA, to which the eighth-grader answered, "Yeah, you're one of the players I watch. Why would you blow it?"

Taken aback, Williams asked him to expound.

"Why would you want to have an attitude, and be late -- the simplest things you can control?" Gonzalez asked. "And you get to be in the NBA? I would die to do that, so don't blow it."

Gonzalez later shared with the media, "I told him, 'You made a mistake and you shouldn't feel like you're down here because you're not a good ballplayer. You need to learn from it.' If I was him, I wouldn't want to be down here. I'd do anything to stay in the NBA."

All of this is coming from a youngster who aspires to play basketball professionally.

Wouldn't it be great for other public figures to take advice from those who look up to them?

Would legislators listen to the advice of a kid?

Perhaps it would sound something like, "Stop fighting with others and work together for the good of those you represent and the nation as a whole. When they're losing jobs, don't vote for a pay raise for yourselves."

CEOs could be told, "Make sure to take care of your employees because you would be nothing without them. Oh yeah, and be sure when you're cutting pay that you are first in line."

Financial officers could be reminded, "Just because the money you oversee is not yours does not mean you shouldn't be as careful with it. You should be even more careful."

The list continues and the fact remains that no one is above receiving advice from anyone, even if they think they are.

With that, everyone -- especially adults -- should be reminded, "Someone is looking up to you. Be a good example."

As for Williams, he has a chance to take the advice he has received to a new city, as he has reportedly been traded to the Houston Rockets.

Though the average person may not be afforded such a fresh start, it is a good reminder that everyday is a new opportunity to impact -- and be impacted by -- someone else, no matter who they may be.

Gabe Licht
Junior Moments