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Artistic Flair and Athletic Flair: A Crossover

When we say creativity, it’s not usually associated with sports. In sports, sometimes we think it’s power, strength, and skill. But what if I told you there is creativity in each of those aspects? In a world where a lot of these players are known for crazy dunks, insane hits, and powerful goals, only a few are considered to be the best.

What is it about the best players in any sport that makes them the best? The hard work? The passion? What happens when they put in the work? What do they look for in these moments of difficulty? What even draws us to them that would make their names be known to us? Some people call it flair, some call it attention to detail, some even call them crazy. For these people, however, it comes naturally to them.

We’re able to see these flashes of flair across many sports. Kyrie Irving, arguably one of the best point guards in the NBA, is not a stranger to highlights because of his acrobatic finishes and unbelievable handles. Antoine Dupont, considered one of the best players in Rugby, is one of the finest scrum halves to ever play the game and at such a young age leading the French national team with a world class performance during the 2023 Rugby World Cup. Christiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, two of the biggest names in Football, have a tendency to be on the big screen because of their fancy finishes and moves that will have your eyes peeled on the screen waiting for something unexpected to happen. 

We are so drawn to the creativity of these people, but why? Many players know the basics of their respective sports, but to the aforementioned players, they take what is so simple and turn it into something otherworldly; making a simple crossover move that bamboozles their defender, a play that breaks through defenders and provides a spark for a game defining moment, feet so fast it will have you rewinding the tape just to be sure that what you saw is actually what you saw, contorting their bodies, having a ball on a string, an unbelievable showcase of skill and power at the highest level are what these players are able to display every time they take the court or field. 

These players spend so much time practicing the basics that when you see them do it live it looks so simple that it will get you thinking that you can do the same. But that’s what they do to get to that level - they do the basics over and over again that it gets to the point where it’s second nature to them. This is where their creativity kicks in. "Now that I’m so good with the basics how can i make it look good and effective?" Who says you can’t have a little fun with the basics? A little tweak here and there then suddenly you have a crossover that will knock defenders off their feet. Reimagining a simple move can leave the spectator speechless because suddenly it’s not so simple anymore. You think you’ve done all you can with a basic move but you’ll be surprised there’s endless possibilities with that simple move. 

Crazy? Possibly. Out of this world? Definitely. World-Class? No question about it. You see creativity can be done in so many ways. It’s all in the details. Their flair for the dramatic is what draws us to them. It leaves us in awe and brings out all kinds of emotions. Kind of how we feel with music or arts isn’t it? There is a work of art that is on display in the court or field. We’re able to replay their games and rewatch these skillful works of art over and over again and still feel something in our chest that is indescribable. The court or field is their canvas and what they leave us with is always an incredible masterpiece.

Ezra James has been playing rugby for the Manila Nomads for almost a year. He is a certified youth coach where he teaches tag rugby to underprivileged youth in Makati. He is also an artist who creates Klaypel artworks on commission. He believes there is creativity that can be seen even in the unlikeliest of places.

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