Jealousy is the key factor that pushes us to do better or it can overpower our thinking abilities because we want to be the best, so we don’t think about how it can affect the people around us. This is exactly what happens in the story, “MVP,” by Clare Mishica. Derek wants to be the most valuable player on his basketball team instead of Cole so much that he forgets to be a team player. When Cole gets hurt, Derek realizes how much more important the trophy and being a part of the team is than getting MVP. Teamwork is always more efficient than trying to achieve something individually because a person can do very little alone, but together we can accomplish a lot. The saying, “Two heads are better than one,” goes along with this perfectly.
There are eight minutes left in the basketball game that will decide which team takes home the trophy and which player gets MVP. Derek resents Cole because he, “was more popular and the team fed him the ball.” He keeps a score in his head of which player, himself or Cole, have gotten more points. It becomes clear when Derek says, “Cole had his fair share of chances,” that he is only thinking of himself. He is so busy trying to get more points than Cole that he takes a shot and misses when Cole was wide open. This makes him feel rotten inside. By now, Derek’s conscience is starting to show and he is feeling guilty for being so narrow minded. Cole adds to the guilt by saying, “Hey, it’s not a big deal. We’re all trying to win this game. We’re a team.”
Four minutes left in the game and Cole sprains his ankle, so he can play no longer. This becomes the turning point in the story and Derek’s character. Derek feels his heart hammering in his ears and knows that he’s going to be MVP without a doubt now. The other team starts double guarding Derek because there is no Cole to divide their attention. He never thought about how much that helped him to make baskets. In other words, both Derek and Cole helped the other to score a...
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