This is the Statt Mann  Baby.  Time to Scatt a little bit.

If you’re a sports fan or even a fan of excellence you’ve no doubt seen the disintegration of Kobe Bryant in pro basketball and Peyton Manning in pro football.

They’ve had historic careers but they’ve stuck around maybe a year too long and their skills have eroded dramatically.

Jeff GordonThey both need to look in the mirror and see Jeff Gordon.

Gordon closed a brilliant career this season with a win and the chance for his fifth championship in his last race.

Gordon goes out like Bryant and Manning.  He won’t be the best ever but he’ll be in all the discussions.  He’s third in wins and fourth in championships.  And, like Kobe, he did his career, some twenty-three years, all with one team, Hendrick Motorsports.

But instead of bumping around in the back of the field waiting for father time to bench him, Gordon shut it down while reaching for another brass ring.

Gordon didn’t go out on top but his shadow reached there this year.  I hope he stays retired and doesn’t surrender to the temptation and big checks to get back in a  car and make someone else money from his skills.

They have a name for that and it often isn’t pretty.