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Would You Turn Down Millions Of Dollars Like Mike Bibby For A Chance To Win A Championship?

Submitted by on March 4, 2011 – 2:33 pmNo Comment

Mike Bibby would. And right about now, Bibby is either looking like the most selfless athlete in the world—or the biggest jackass in America, depending on who you ask. Earlier this week, Bibby accepted a buyout of his contract from the Washington Wizards, which basically means he accepted a fraction of what he was owed in exchange for the chance to leave D.C. to join another team. It makes sense for the Wizards to do it to save a few bucks, but it doesn’t make cents for Bibby, if you know what we mean.

But Bibby accepted the deal because he’s getting up there in age—in NBA years, at least—and he wants the win a ring before he ultimately retires. “It is always tough to give up money,” he said shortly after announcing that he’d be joining the Heat. “I’ve won and lost in my career and I’m at a stage where I want to be happy.”

And that presents a very interesting question: Would you do what Mike Bibby is doing right now? Given the chance, would you accept a significantly lower salary in order to have a better chance for success in your field of work? I’m sure the common answer here is, “No way. But I also don’t make millions of dollars like Mike Bibby every year.” But money is money and, as anyone with money will tell you, you really can’t have enough of it if that’s your goal in life. All it takes is one bad investment to bring down your total net worth. So whether you make $20,000 or $2 million, this question still applies. Would you sacrifice a portion of your salary for the chance to wake up and be happy everyday?

On the one hand, Bibby might wind up looking like an idiot at the end of the day. If the Heat don’t win a title anytime soon, he may have just made the biggest gamble of his life and lost. On the other hand, what he is doing is actually pretty admirable. So often, we criticize pro athletes for playing strictly for a paycheck and for not showing enough love for the sport they’re involved in. Bibby’s calculated move not only puts him in position to win; it also gives him the best opportunity to enjoy himself out on the court.

I’ll be honest: I would definitely have to think twice before I gave up a huge contract in order to go and join a team that might not even give me the championship I’m looking for. But what Bibby has done here is show that there are guys out there who play pro sports for more than just the money. Now the only question left is: Would you do it? It’s not as easy as it sounds, huh?

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