The NBA All Star Lame
This morning, the NBA All Star Game became even more of a joke, as if that was even possible. The League announced that the traditional East vs West format (which has been around for over 60 years) has been scrapped, along with any remaining meaning of the midseason classic. Now, a fan vote will determine a captain from each conference (just like before), but those captains will proceed to then draft their starting lineups from a pool of players also represented by a vote. The reserves will still be picked by the coaches (I hear it’s Ball and Jordan), and the contest will still be a wishy-washy version of an actual basketball game.
I have long been a critic of the All Star Game, not because I am a despondent, woeful individual who despises high-flying acrobatics and lethal barrages of long range buckets, but because the “intensity” level at which all this action takes place. (Quick counterargument/rebuttal here. Many say, “At least there’s the dunk and three point contests.” I respond with, “Yes, that’s exactly what the All Star Game has become!”) Even the announcers start to get bored when they see six digits on the scoreboard. “And Durant knocks down a three...The pass is stolen and James flushes it home on the other end….” (this is all meant to be read in a bored voice). As a former professional AAU baller, I know a thing or two about the game and how it’s played. I myself was more of a defensive player, always cherry picking in games (but underneath the opponent's’ basket), dreading the times when my team actually had the ball, or when the other team was too pathetic to give me a challenge. Because of my defensive roots (on multiple levels), I enjoy a hard-nosed game when I see one (although ironically I am a Warriors fan). So when I watch world class athletes prance around on the hardwood, occasionally mustering enough energy to jump six inches off the ground and dunk, the player in me cringes.
There was at least some meaning to this slothlike representation of Dr. Naismith’s creation. We the fans got to see our favorite players from each conference square off against each other (because we all knew that in the end the only East/West clash we would see would be Warriors/Cavs). Now, the NBA has derived us of even that, officially placing it behind the Pro Bowl as most interesting to watch.
To tangent off for a bit, this brings up an interesting point. From 2013-2015, the NFL experimented with a similar non-conference setup for the Pro Bowl. However, they’re back to normal now, and they’ve added tons of new fun activities for the conferences to compete in, like dodgeball!
Anyways, where was I? Oh right, THE ALL STAR GAME SUCKS. There’s no defense, no wacky activities like dodgeball, and now no conference bragging rights! What is happening to sports? The Pro Bowl has always been a sham, the Midsummer Classic this year was un-wowing, and now the NBA has ruined its own! Ladies and gentlemen, WE MUST UNITE TO SAVE SPORTS…..Except for football of course. That ship has left the harbor (and sailed to London).