I’m Sorry…But The NBA Sucks



There sure is a lotta love in the NBA these days…

Tonight I decided to venture out into the cold tundra of downtown Dallas and get myself a non-hotel meal. Considering I have eaten at the Crowne Plaza for the last 3 nights and not once have I been happy with the food, I figured the fear of eating yet another average dinner was too much for me to bear. So off I went, looking for a good place to settle in for some grub. I managed to find a little bar called “Gators” on North Market St. “Gators” is your typical bar food place with lots of frozen daiquiris and loud music. So there I sat, watching the ESPN Friday Night NBA game and drinking my Dirty Banana drink and it occurs to me that…well…the NBA kinda sucks.

All my life I have loved the game of basketball. I used to watch the NBA faithfully when I was a teen. Loved the Magic/Bird matchups of the 80’s. And then in the 90’s I loved to watch Scottie dish to Air for a tongue-wagging slam dunk off the baseline. So much joy to watch those heroes of the past do their thing. But now?

I’m not getting it.

Granted, I was watching the 3rd quarter of the Dallas Mavs vs the Boston Celtics on a Friday night in February. And I don’t watch a lot of NBA anymore so maybe this wasn’t a typical game for either team. But here’s what I saw while watching…

  • Superstar Kevin Garnett shoving a referee and NOT getting tossed out of the game.
  • Multiple travel violations that were not called.
  • Too numerous to count moving picks that were not called.
  • Multiple over-the-back violations that were not called.
  • Various degrees of lousy shot selection by professional basketball players.
  • A bunch of one-on-one plays that usually ended up with a player traveling to the basket and getting hammered near the rim and no call being made.

If this is what professional basketball players have developed into, it’s a sorry state of the league. At no time did I ever feel like there was any flow to the game. It was always hurry down the court and shoot. Where was the teamwork? Where were the stars? Oh sure…Dirk Nowitzki has 18 (quiet) points. How he managed to score at all is amazing testament to the man’s ability to put the ball in the cylinder. Every play I saw he was getting hacked by at least 3 guys. Ray Allen can still ball. He was lighting it up with some short jumpers. But other than that? No one looked good at all. Even Jason Kidd, who can really catch on fire in NBA Jam!, looked out of rhythm the entire time he was in the game. It was laughable really, watching these grown men trying to play basketball and getting paid good money to do it. And there they were, jogging up the court, hacking each other, shuffling their feet and pushing & shoving each other. What a disgrace.

The only sign of sportsmanship I saw the entire time I was watching was when a Maverick player got shoved into the stands at the Boston Garden. He was on the floor and a fan extended a helping hand, pulling him up off the court. That was it. The rest of the time, both teams just looked pissed off and ready to body slam one another.

Uh…guys? It’s BASKETBALL. Not football! Play basketball. THIS is NOT basketball! I dunno what that was I was watching but it looked kind of like the Ultimate Fighting promos ESPN kept showing during timeouts! I was terrible! And I won’t be watching anymore.

Not that it matters. It looks like the NBA will also be going on strike next year. But unlike football, somehow I doubt it will be missed. College basketball is SO much better, it’s not even funny.

Oh look! “CSI” is on USA Network…

Aaaand so much for watching the NBA. I’ll check back in again in another 15 years.

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5 Responses to I’m Sorry…But The NBA Sucks

  1. Dan Hansen says:

    I follow the Mavericks faithfully and I would have to say that this game was pretty brutal.

    NBA officiating is an interesting and hard to understand opaque mystical art. Some games they keep it reasonably clean and others they let people hack, bump, and wrestle and call it “energetic defense”. It really does depend on the night and the crew.

    I was surprised at how physical Boston was (and Dallas followed in their example). Perhaps I should not have been though. I get the impression that this is their style – fans of the team would call it a “tough” defensive style of play. You are right – this style of play does interrupt the flow of the game.

    Let me assure you though – that’s is not Dirk’s game. If you let him he’s more than happy to do his thing without pummeling people.

    Needless to say, the NBA *is* a contact sport (although most nights not as brutal as this). Like professional hockey, if you don’t accept that then you won’t like the product.

    • Al says:

      This is a fair assessment. To each his or her own and I am still gonna say college basketball is a more pure version of what basketball is supposed to be. Although I don’t mind physical (the Big East is VERY physical), this kind of contact and the way there were so few violations called really made the game uninteresting to me. Anyone can simply shove another player while he’s going to the basket in order to disrupt his shot. Anyone can grab someone’s jersey as they set a pick to get his man open. Anyone can shuffle their feet in order to get better positioning to take a shot or make a pass. That’s all those guys did the entire time I watched! Sure…they’re big and there is gonna be contact. But seriously…THAT was ridiculous.

  2. mom says:

    Never did like pro ball of any kind. Glad you can finally see the difference. Also glad you found something to eat in the frozen Tundra. Had me worried last night. See ya………..mom (love you, too!)

  3. Dude! Totally forgot to reccomend… If you are in the Dallas/Ft Worth area – go to Texas de Brazil in Addison (North end of town). It is the best (by leaps and bounds) Brazillian steak house, I have ever been to! also… I totally agree – NBA is just not even fun to watch. Gone are the Johnson/Bird/Jordan/Malone/etc. Days of ol’. It now seems like a bunch of over-paid teenagers having a school-yard ball brawl. They look like half-ass wanna be MMA fighters, without the skill and honor attached. Thugs… Yep, thats it. I am now an old fuddy-duddy… They are playing thug-ball… there is no grace or sportsmanship anymore.

  4. ProudPapa says:

    NCAA basketball is the worst I’ve ever seen it – nothing like watching missed 10 foot jumpers and lay ups and the shot clock is way too long.

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