He was shocked to hear the question and told the reporter that basketball is not the most important thing for every player, family is.
Men are just usually expected to focus on their careers while their wives sit at home taking care of their children. Such an expectation was also put on Augusto Lima, the star center of Zalgiris Kaunas, as the birth of his child was approaching mid-season. In fact, the child was due on the day of his team's semifinal match. Sarunas Jasikevicius, the head coach, had the final say on whether Lima should miss the game or his own child's birth, reported Bored Panda.
Coach Jasikevicius, a father of two, permitted Lima to attend the birth of his first child, and Zalgiris still won, gaining a 2-1 lead in the best-of-three series. However, one reporter persisted in questioning Jasikevicius about Lima's absence during a press conference. The coach defended his player and expertly educated the reporter on family values. The reporter asked, "Coach, what do you think about Augusto Lima going away in the midst of a series to attend the birth of his child?" The coach was puzzled about why his decision of letting Lima go was being questioned.
Journalist Asks Coach Why He Let His Star Player Attend Child’s Birth During Semifinals, And His Response Goes Viral pic.twitter.com/LDpkxnTjf8— Archlectic Design (@Archlectic) May 22, 2017
The reporter went on to ask if it was important for a player to go and "leave the team during the semifinals." The coach had the best reply to such an ignorant question. He said, "Do you have kids? When you have kids, youngster, you'll understand. Because that's the height of human experience. Wow, that's a good question really. Do you think basketball is the most important thing in life?"
The reporter still did not stop and stated that the semifinals are important. The coach replied, "When you see your first child, you will understand what the most important thing in life is. Because nothing can be more majestic in the world than the birth of a child. Not titles, not anything else. Augusto Lima is now in heaven, emotionally. I’m really happy for him." Lima thanked his coach in a now-deleted tweet writing, "There are a lot of different people and different coaches, but this man is so great... both on and off the court. Thanks, coach."
We often forget that the star athletes of our favorite teams are not just football players but human beings who have more important things in their life. In a similar instance of humanity triumphing over unhealthy competitiveness, during a football game between Avon Grove High School and Coatesville High School, the two opposing football teams met at midfield in a rare display of true love and support. Gavin, an Avon Grove player, had recently been diagnosed with stage 3 Hodgkin's cancer and both school teams met to support him with balloons and words of encouragement.
The Coatesville football team showed their support for Gavin with balloons in the color of his cancer ribbon and one large balloon shaped like the number 6, which is his jersey number. These incidents show that football is not just about winning and losing but about connecting on a human level. Sports should be a celebration of spirit, community and kindness and not just about being the best in the game.