The NBA has become boring. Yes, I said it, boring and way too predictable. Before the 2010-2011 season even started, you could count on one hand the number of teams that had a chance to make it to the NBA Finals. Five teams and only one in the Western Conference. The resurrection of the San Antonio Spurs has increased the number to two teams in the West. It’s not surprising at all, in the last twelve years, the Los Angeles Lakers or the Spurs have represented the West eleven times. The Dallas Mavericks are the only other team to break through and make it to the Finals and we know what happened to them.
The Eastern Conference has offered more variety. In the same past dozen years the East has had 9 different teams make it to the marquee matchup. This year it’s Boston, Orlando or Miami. Chicago has an outside chance, but the referees, home court advantage, and the big bosses’ desire for higher television ratings will be too much for the Bulls to overcome.
The 2010-2011 season will be remembered as the year that a few of the players took over the entire league. LeBron and company got together to do what their previous owners couldn’t; put together a team that will contend for a championship. It’s The Lord of the Rings, NBA style.
Basically we have five out of the thirty teams that have a legitimate shot at winning it all, which is great for those teams, their cities and their fans. But it stinks for the other 25 (or 84%) teams that don’t. What team wants to fight for that seventh or eighth playoff seed knowing that they’re going to get knocked out and possibly embarrassed in the first round?
One of the main problems is there just not enough of the “elite” players to go around. And now, that the “elitists” are making the decisions on where they are going to play, and whom they are going to play with, we can only assume that the disparity between the “haves” and the “have-nots” will only become greater. Denver’s Carmello Anthony and New Orleans’ Chris Paul are following in the footsteps of James, Bosh and Wade. Paul is “waiting around for one more year”, to see if the Hornets management can gather up enough talent to satisfy his championship desires. Mello has made it clear that he wants to join Amare Stoudemire in New York and create their version of “Fellowship of the Ring”.
The NBA has a long slippery slope of problems facing them in the immediate future. Any changes geared towards having more parity in the league would be a great start. If not, attendance and television ratings are sure to plummet. Simply put it would be a whole lot more exciting for everyone if more teams had an actual chance of winning it all. The Oklahoma City Thunder vs. the Chicago Bulls playing in the NBA Finals? That would be a welcomed change, at least for this fan.
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