With respect to loving the NBA, we are all this good basketball dog

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For the last 6 1/2 years, I have been feeling an acute absence in my heart. There’s been something missing — a feeling I’ve been chasing, but haven’t been able to replicate.

It’s the feeling of writing about how a very good dog can encapsulate the way you feel about the state of affairs in the NBA. I had that, once. I haven’t had it since.

Until now.

. . 옴모니.. 나 유보내주라… . . . #English_안되서들어 #basketball_스줄몰라서안돼 #tv_눈나빠져뒤로와_백수개_길가온씨 . . #멍지네 #개스그램 #대견 #도그스그램 #스그램 #반려견 #가족 #소 #일상 #데일리 #맞 #좋아요 #로미 #로우 #셀 #럽스그램 #l4l #dog #pet #goldenretriever #Retriever #Labrador #puppy #강아지 #애견 #사랑 #복

A post shared by 멍지네 (@mongji_mom) on Jan 24, 2018 at 4:59pm PST

This, friends, is a good dog. We know this because, ultimately, it is a dog, and because it is enthusiastically following every run-out-the-clock dribble of the San Antonio Spurs114-102 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers last Tuesday. I understand completely the feeling of being really intrigued by how Spurs point guard Dejounte Murray moves with and how he handles the ball; I spent some time watching that this summer, and it’s a pretty fun thing to pay attention to! (This dog also does other things, including lounging with other good dogs, and there are pictures of that, too. Please enjoy them with our compliments.)

We know this, too, because it was not a one-off occurrence. This dog was back at it again on Wednesday night, keeping an eye on the Boston Celtics’ shellacking of the New York Knicks. This time, though, the focus wasn’t ball handling; it was tracking ball movement, and trying to will the Celtics to shut down the Knicks’ chances of generating an open shot:

. . 자 시켜야겠네… . 저 선수들은 모르겠지? 가온이가 수도없이 뽀뽀고 있다는걸… . 가온이가 농구 보는 모습이 재미있게 보였는지 미국 지역방송에도 나간다네요.. 이스북, 위, 인스그램… 오늘 많은곳에 가온이가 올라가서… 내 개가 맞다는걸 보이느라 오늘 농구보는 모습 다시 올립니다… 가온아!! 넌 내아들이야…ㅠㅠ . . #오늘은_NBA_basketball #NY #Boston . . #멍지네 #개스그램 #대견 #도그스그램 #스그램 #반려견 #가족 #소 #일상 #데일리 #맞 #좋아요 #로미 #로우 #셀 #럽스그램 #l4l #dog #pet #goldenretriever #Retriever #Labrador #puppy #강아지 #애견 #사랑 #복

A post shared by 멍지네 (@mongji_mom) on Feb 1, 2018 at 3:40am PST

The best thing about Wednesday’s appearance: this very good dog also was also extremely committed to the Celtics finishing off their defensive possession and turning it into offense, repeatedly snout-butting the television to try to implore the C’s to push the ball after the rebound rather than just going through the motions. Every coach knows that, even in a game you have well in hand, it’s important to develop good habits and not let your guiding principles slip; to this very good dog, every possession is an opportunity to get better, whether it’s in the first minute of the game or the last minute.

This very good dog is extremely focused on Dejounte Murray’s dribbling. (Screencap via momongji_mom on Instagram)
This very good dog is extremely focused on Dejounte Murray’s dribbling. (Screencap via momongji_mom on Instagram)

I can hear you all out there, and sure, rebooting the “Air Bud” franchise with this hoop-loving pup would obviously be an idea that would print money and captivate a new generation of children. But let’s not try to jam a square peg into a round hole. Let’s let a good dog hunt its passions. To borrow the parlance of the film series: there is no rule saying a dog can’t be an advance scout or a development assistant. Let’s get this dog in the gym, so it can fulfill its lifelong dream of helping players reach their full potential. Ideally, while getting many belly rubs and scratches behind the ear.

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Dan Devine is a writer and editor for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at devine@oath.com or follow him on Twitter!

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