How will we assess Charlie Davies?
We can't be objective about things that we love. I will never admit that Steve Martin has lost a step, no matter how many Cheaper by the Dozen sequels he makes. I will never get mad at bar-b-q ribs, even as they try to kill me with their succulence. And I will continue to convince myself that Radiohead are "experimenting with ambient sounds" instead of "mailing it in with trance beats they threw together on their Mac."
I love that Charlie Davies is playing for D.C. United. And there's no way I can be objective about his performance. And neither can you: you love that United have a striker with top-tier potential, you love that he's American, and you love a good redemption story. Bill Simmons once said that watching Blazers fans root for Greg Oden was "like watching 15,000 parents rooting for their kid, only all 15,000 parents fathered the same kid." I think we're in that territory with Charlie Davies right now.
So, I think we need to acknowledge up front that we'll be assessing Davies' performance through rose-colored glasses. I know I will. Davies will probably get an extra point or two on my player rankings, and I'll probably forgo descriptions like "flubbed" and "crapped his pants in front of goal" in favor of phrases like "narrowly missed" and "failed to capitalize." He certainly won't get the same level of scrutiny as, say, Kurt Morsink, whom I've treated on this blog about as fairly as Peter treats Meg on Family Guy.
So, what will success and failure for Charlie Davies look like on this blog? Here's a quick guide to what you're likely to see...
If he plays very well.
"If Pele and Athena had a son and raised him at Old Trafford, Charlie Davies would make that child look like Abe Vigoda with a club foot."
"United need to stop searching for land for a stadium and start searching for land for the Charlie Davies monument."
"When my daughter was born, the doctors placed her in my arms, I stared into her eyes, and she was about half as beautiful as the goal Davies scored last night."*
Words and phrases to watch for: otherworldly, immaculate, orgasmic, weeping uncontrollably.
If he plays pretty well.
"Is it constitutional to declare someone 'national team striker for life'?"
"Two games into the season and the MVP race is pretty much over."
"Davies' recovery makes Lance Armstrong look like half a pansy."
Words and phrases to watch for: awesome, clinical, Lazarus, Six Million Dollar Man.
If he plays poorly.
"United's midfield need to give the strikers better service."
"Davies seems to be improving. Just a few more months and he probably will have shaken off the rust and stopped accumulating so many own goals and red cards."
"WHY DOES BOB BRADLEY HATE CHARLIE DAVIES!?!?!?!?!?!"
Words and phrases to watch for: hasn't gelled, battling, intangibles, does the little things well, Juan Agudelo is overrated.
If he plays very poorly.
"Davies was very respectful of the anthem last night, had his uniform on properly and hustled off the field when subbed in the 31st minute."
"Davies is still finding his form. Pretty soon, he'll remember that only the 'keeper is allowed to use his hands."
"Josh Wolff has looked good lately."
Words and phrases to watch for: patience, forgiveness, spiritual journey, OPTION to buy.
* I don't have kids.
| February 25, 2011; 11:26 AM ET
Categories: Jeff Maurer, United | Tags: DC United, Jeff Maurer, United
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