If you want to get really dark and existential about the whole thing, sports are fundamentally just a reminder of death. They’re all physical performance, which is intimately linked to youth, which is really only a warning toward old age. We anxiously count down toward a player’s projected peak, at which point the clock resets, and the process begins again to forecast his decline. It can quickly begin to feel personal, even when it isn’t. Remember when he was a rookie? when you were his age? when we were still younger than some of these guys? when watching didn’t have to be about remembering?