Powills: How NBA2K Taught Me a Lesson; Thanks R. Scott Sutton
Powills: How NBA2K Taught Me a Lesson; Thanks R. Scott Sutton

Scott Sutton (not the coach, Safeguard’s — fine, I will add the unnecessary “R” — R. Scott Sutton) deserves all the credit in the world.

At least for this first part.

Two years ago, I noticed Sutton was getting particularly buff. Knowing his years of noshing on Chipotle and pizza every chance .....

Scott Sutton (not the coach, Safeguard’s — fine, I will add the unnecessary “R” — R. Scott Sutton) deserves all the credit in the world.

At least for this first part.

Two years ago, I noticed Sutton was getting particularly buff. Knowing his years of noshing on Chipotle and pizza every chance he got – his fit physique puzzled me.

“Scott, how are you getting in such good shape?” I asked, puzzled why my lumpy belly didn’t match his.

“Grand Theft Auto, my friend,” he replied.

Um, what? How the hell can Grand Theft Auto make this Certified Franchise Executive turn so firm?

“Dude, I run on the treadmill while playing Grand Theft Auto. I can never get in trouble for spending time playing video games when I am exercising, too,” he gushed.

R. Scott Sutton is a genius. And, his ego just got a little bigger.

Now, most of his ideas, he later told me, are great ideas stolen from others. Yet, he has found a way to master multi-tasking, and more importantly, has figured out a way to make exercise incredible, while keeping his family satisfied with his time allocation.

Not being one for the gun games, I naturally decided sports games were my guide to a healthier lifestyle. With no one around, I manhandled the treadmill into the perfect position, popped in Madden 2012 (No, I don’t play retro games, it was 2012 when I first attempted treadmill gaming), and off I went.

I started slowly — walking at a 4-speed — but quickly graduated to 6-speed (I know, still slow for many of your super franchise athletes) by half time. However, mastering running and gaming should not be limited to two quarters of experience. In the 3rd quarter of my first treadmill gaming session, I juked with Matt Forte — and nearly broke every bone in my body as I attempted to match the juking in the game and fell off the treadmill.

Injury was saved, though.

Since then, I have captured a few hundred miles while treadmill gaming and have dropped some LBs (Xbox, are you listening? It’s time for you to market this — and if you need a great agency, give me a call).

And now, I have learned the art of satisfaction.

I know, a lot of lead in for the big message.

In late 2013, as I cruised through the first two months of my NBA 2K basketball game, I noticed something that was fairly parallel to my business life — I was constantly searching for the best team in the game. Given salary cap restrictions and my inability to resurrect Michael Jordan into the game to play side-by-side with D. Rose, I was limited in what I could do with my roster.

For the first half mile of treadmill gaming, I would scout out great trades. No team in the history of the NBA has made more trades than I have with my 2014 Chicago Bulls, yet perfection was my ultimate determination.

I had a great base of players: a perfect video game healthy D. Rose, plus Joakim Noah (who, through my masterful game craftsmanship, always scores 30 points with 10 rebounds), Mike Dunleavy (my token 3-point shooter off the bench), Danny Granger (who I traded for, and keeps winning player of the week), Chandler Parsons (because my Gator buds at Wing Zone have helped guide me to liking Gator basketball), JaJuan Johnson (who isn’t in the league in real life, but in my game life helps out on rebounding — like Rodman) and a slew of bench stars, including Greg Oden.

For you non-sports fans, those names may not make a lot of sense to you. To me, though, they make perfect sense.

Once I pieced together this squad, I felt complete. I haven’t made another trade in 3 weeks and my team has lost only 3 games to accompany its 30 wins. I have created, in my game, on my treadmill, the perfect team.

In my real life, I am constantly trying to do the same. Whether that is creating a new idea for franchise development — trading parts of it, copy and pasting other parts, and combining for what I hope will be the perfect solution — or on my team at our agency — hiring incredible people to progress the creative capabilities and results we are able to deliver outbound. Just like NBA 2K three weeks ago, trading and change are prevalent in my career, in search of that perfect team, perfect puzzle and perfect combination of greatness.

I have learned a few things through NBA 2k, though.

First, a team with all super stars (meaning all 5 starters) cannot win, nor meet my expectations. If I want Noah scoring 30 points, I can’t have D. Wade on my team scoring 30, too, and D. Rose and Lebron scoring 40. Mathematically, there are not enough points to go around.

Second, with one superstar, a few up-and-comers, a few established supporters and a few creative minds, I can create a super team. There truly is no “I” in team (cliché, get over it).

And lastly, no super team will remain intact forever. You have to constantly look for adjustments, change and upgrades to maintain the perfect balance. No coach stays with a single team for a whole career, and rarely do athletes stick around. Dynasties only last for a few years, never forever (just ask Blockbuster). But a willingness to constantly adjust the puzzle pieces should keep you competitive, feared and strong for years to come (just ask the New York Yankees).

My desire to be perfect is OK; however, good is sometimes just as good as great. That is, when you have a lot of good people working together for that same common goal — in our agency’s world, to breed happy clients.

And, running at 6-speed for an entire game requires more talent than I possess. Therefore, perfect for me may be 4.5- or 5-speed, with a belly that is slightly larger than R. Scott Sutton’s.

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