by Marcel Mutoni

In this sports-mad world that we live in, as our athletes age, they have a strange way of making us feel old. That’s the way I feel when I contemplate the fact that Vince Carter turned 32 yesterday.

As you may recall, there was a time when VC was the League’s most athletic star, easily (and literally) rising above the fray on a nightly basis. Those days are long gone, and he’s now content to play the role of elder statesman on a young team that’s fighting and clawing for a Playoff spot.

From the Star-Ledger:

There has to be something a little scary about 32, though – if only because in basketball terms, it just sounds much older than, say, 31. When this guy broke into the league, Oak was 35 and Kevin Willis was 36, and that was ancient to him. And 35 isn’t exactly very far away – he’ll be that age when his current contract runs out.

“I remember those guys, it was like I thought I wouldn’t even be around at that age,”VC said. “You don’t think like that. So it’s funny to hear these guys talk about it, they’re like, ‘You played against those guys?’ I’m like, ‘Yeah.’”

VC’s teammate, Keyon Dooling, went on to say that Vince is now a better all-around player. And while that may well be true, one can’t help but reminisce about what once was.