For some, the NBA doesn’t need fixed. It obviously has it’s niche and there are those that love watching every minute of it. For a lot of sports fans though, it’s boring. You have contracts that are out of control, player drama on social media, and half ass defense that gives most games an exhibition feel. Sports fans want competition; we want games that matter, even in February.
If you look at the league right now, there are 4 teams that really have a decent chance at winning it all. And 3 of those are hoping the Warriors slip at some point. The other 26 teams are essentially a farm system for the big boys and the wannabes. The trade deadline is a salary dump and a last chance grab for teams on the cusp. This isn’t what most fans want. Granted, I don’t live in a city that has an NBA team, but this is the general consensus among some diehard sports fans friends of mine. The league simply doesn’t garner interest with us.
In the Eastern Conference, it will likely be the Milwaukee Bucks or the Toronto Raptors that make it to the Finals. A few other teams have an outside shot; Indiana Pacers, Philadelphia 76ers, and the Boston Celtics. Other than that, the teams in the East are going through the motions while collecting ridiculous paychecks. It will be interesting to see attendance numbers as we get closer to the end of the regular season, especially for the teams on the outside looking in.
In the Western Conference, the Golden State Warriors and the Houston Rockets will be the teams to beat. The Denver Nuggets, Oklahoma City Thunder, and the Portland Trailblazers will make some noise, but I don’t see them as serious contenders for the title. Anything can happen, as we have seen in past years in all sports. Injuries could also play a part, but that’s the only hope some of these teams have.
Probably the most annoying aspect of the NBA, at least for me, is seeing the drama on social media. It borders on the “he called me a poo poo head so now I’m going to meet him at the flagpole at 3:00” nonsense of years gone by. Everyone grab your bookbags and head outside as soon as that final bell rings. It makes no sense and you very rarely see it in any other sport. It’s immaturity at its finest, or its worst, you make the call.
So how do we fix it? I’m not sure there’s an easy answer. As far as the social media nonsense, that’s up to the respective owners of the teams and whether or not they would want to put down some guidelines. When it comes to a top heavy league, well, the league created this mess. At some point, you would think the league would implode with these contracts. That remains to be seen. Something has to change though, one would think. And can we do something about the flopping? Good Lord, it’s horrible. My suggestion? Assess a technical foul for a flop; 2 shots and the ball. Then that player has to sit out the rest of the quarter, whether it’s 11 minutes or 37 seconds. Just stop flopping!!!
Despite all the things I don’t like about the NBA, I’m excited for the playoffs. That’s when you really see these guys play hard. Defense becomes key, clutch shots just mean more. It’s the basketball we love; the basketball we deserve. Can someone direct Adam Silver to these fixes I’ve addressed? No? Fine, I’ll just continue to hope that the league improves the first 82 games of its season.