At about 10 pm this past Saturday, most of the tennis players from the Spanish Davis Cup team were drowning their sorrows, one way or another, in the bar at the Marriott in downtown Winston-Salem. Some were engaged in quiet conversation, some played cards, while others sipped drinks. Despite their quarterfinal loss to the US that afternoon, they inhaled their disappointment and sat with friends, loved ones who'd traveled from Spain and US fans who were also staying at the hotel. Each one was gracious when asked to take pictures with fans, including the contingent of fans who often follow the US team on their yearly Davis Cup quest.
And the American team? They were nowhere to be found. Even though they stayed in the same hotel, they'd split for an unknown destination. Although everyone respects the rights of these professional athletes to have privacy, not one player even stopped by the bar to thank the fans before going out to party privately.
Maybe the American team could learn something from the Spanish team: winning isn't everything.