Wednesday, June 29, 2022

The problem with the NBA

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Shreya Christina
Shreya has been with for 3 years, writing copy for client websites, blog posts, EDMs and other mediums to engage readers and encourage action. By collaborating with clients, our SEO manager and the wider team, Shreya seeks to understand an audience before creating memorable, persuasive copy.

ESPN’s annual ESPY award show was created to reward athletes from around the world for their hard work, skills, determination and more. When former NFL superstar quarterback Peyton Manning hosted the ceremony, and at the show’s opening, he absolutely crushed NBA champion Kevin Durant’s move to the Golden State Warriors to create what many sports fans called a “super team.” This term is one that mostly applies to basketball and comes from the Miami Heat of a few years ago, who signed Lebron James and Chris Bosh to join Dwayne Wade and form the NBA super team. Durant was left unimpressed when Manning tricked him into joining the United States Olympic gymnastics team that captured America’s hearts at last summer’s Rio Olympics.

Manning said “and our gymnastics team was so dominant, Kevin Durant told me he wants to play for them next year…and I have to tell you I don’t think you would start for that team, Kevin.”

He pranked Durant’s former Oklahoma City teammate Russell Westbrook. Westbrook showed clear disdain for Durant after moving to the California coast and games with the two stars often got chippy. Peyton was full of NBA rips all night while hammering in the negativity and criticism of basketball.

Manning later stated, “Remember, it doesn’t matter who wins or loses tonight, just like in the regular NBA season.”

Many sports fans find it difficult to watch the NBA. They often see it as a lot of fanfare for a product that doesn’t really impress in “real” basketball. Many argue that college basketball is more fun because of its deep rivalry and style of play. College basketball is more defense-oriented and in March Madness anyone can win. In the NBA, super teams and superstars are often the deciding factor before the game starts. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has shown a free-market approach to the league, allowing many trades and signings to build super teams. Oklahoma City was one of the first examples of a superteam after the Heat and now Golden State is talking about as the power of the league. They won all but one of the playoffs this season en route to the NBA title, which came as no surprise to many. Just a year earlier, Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers came back from a 3-1 deficit to defeat Steph Curry and Golden State in the final. The league was dominated by Golden State from the West and Cleveland in the Eastern Conference. In the play-offs, both teams made their way to the final. The Warriors lost no games until the Finals and Cleveland lost only once before boasting Golden State in five games. What’s exciting about predictable competition. Shouldn’t the Commissioner try to equalize the teams? Is he not responsible for encouraging fair play and increasing the competitiveness of the league?

By creating a super team and growing the league around it, the league alienates fans from “minor” markets like the Milwaukee Bucks and many other NBA franchises. They cater to the bandwagon fans who are only interested in following a team that wins. The NBA gets its revenue from bandwagon fans buying tons of merchandise from their “favorite” team. Many argue that the NBA really doesn’t produce the most entertaining product. The games generally score very highly and many players and teams can care less about defense. Basketball breaks the old cliché that defense wins championships. It’s all about scoring and scoring again. The rules favor the offense and it is difficult for teams to defend.

Basketball gets a lot of coverage in the news from ESPN and other sports news networks. ESPN also covers basketball. Every show, if you look at the time spent talking about each topic, the vast majority of time is spent on basketball. NBA games are short and often don’t even matter until the last four quarters. The sport is a lot of scoring from basket to basket. I want to enjoy basketball. But it’s hard to stay interested in it. The competitive level aspect is also a big disadvantage for me. How can anyone support a team when the inequality of talent between two teams is overwhelming. The difference between the Golden State Warriors and the Philadelphia 76ers is huge. Games are exciting when they are competitive. The talk of super teams is a problem. ESPN has been spreading many rumors during the NBA season about stars like Paul George and Carmelo Anthony leaving their teams to join teams like the Houston Rockets in an attempt to create a super team capable of overthrowing the Warriors. in the Western Conference. How exciting is that since few teams get better and more teams get worse when they lose their stars?

The competition makes a lot of money. They just signed a new TV contract and raised the salary cap significantly. This means that almost every player makes a lot of money and many are overpaid because teams have to spend a certain amount of money per year. Even Richard Sherman of the Seattle Seahawks encouraged other football players to strike to make money at the NBA level. It’s great that NBA players can make money, but do some low-level players earn ridiculous sums of money? Even if they hardly play or are barely on the team?

The NBA needs to bring a more competitive and exciting product to the field. They should do more for the fans of small market teams and they could even expand the competition to attract more interest from more sports fans. The insane amounts of money they make and the less exciting product they put on the field. College basketball takes the cake in my opinion in producing a more exciting game. Nothing in the NBA sparks as much interest as March Madness and they are much more predictable, which is part of the NBA Finals. The NBA is hard to watch and the league should check its priorities to try to create a more exciting and competitive league.

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