The Second Dumbest Reason People Give For Hating NBA Basketball » VSB

Featured, Sports

The Second Dumbest Reason People Give For Hating NBA Basketball

Steph Curry (Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

 

At the moment, the New England Patriots, partially fueled by a gaggle of sociopathic self-righteousness after being “vindicated” by Deflategate, are undefeated and would seem to be the early favorites to win the Super Bowl. This information should come to no surprise to anyone who’s even a casual fan of the NFL. Because that exact same thing could have been said in 2014. Or 2013. Or 2012. Or 2011. Or, damn, any year that Tom Brady has been quarterback. Perhaps they wouldn’t have been undefeated at this point in those other years, but they would have been an early Super Bowl favorite, and they would have been partially fueled by a gaggle of sociopathic self-righteousness after being “vindicated” by…something. Because no one does fabricated vindication like a Boston sports team and their fans.

Now, the Patriots are generally recognized as a dynasty in today’s NFL. Which seems to make them an anomaly in a league where the concept of professional parity isn’t just paramount, it’s a part of its identity, etched into the thinking behind everything from its collective bargaining agreement to its television deals. If the NFL had a Tinder profile, “any given Sunday” would be listed in its bio, right underneath “fuck bitches, get money” and “support breast cancer research.” Its popularity is also related to this concept. Fans existing in cities with eternally shitty franchises like Tampa Bay and Cleveland keep hope alive by making that their own personal mantra. “Maybe, just maybe we’ll fart around and win nine games this year, and sneak into the playoffs. And then ANYTHING can happen.”

It is also a lie.

There are 32 teams currently in the NFL. Yet, since the 2000 season — a span of 15 years — the New England Patriots have won four times, and the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Baltimore Ravens, and the New York Giants have each won two. That’s 10 championships won by 1/8th of the league. And, in the 49 years that there have been Super Bowls, six teams (the Steelers, the Patriots, the Giants, the San Francisco 49ers, the Green Bay Packers, and the Dallas Cowboys) have combined to win 28 of them. This is not parity. This is oligarchy.

It is also, for many, the reason cited when they explain why they can’t stand NBA basketball. Because “it’s so predictable.” And because “the regular season doesn’t mean anything because you’ll just see the same teams in the playoffs this year.” And because they “miss the 80s and 90s” — a memory that doesn’t make any sense when you remember that three teams (The Chicago Bulls, the Los Angeles Lakers, the Boston Celtics) won like 982% of the championships then. 

Now, I will not dispute that these claims have some merit. The unique nature of basketball means that a dominant player will have more opportunity to provide an impact on the outcome of the game than he/she would in any other major professional team sport. For instance, as good as Tom Brady is, he doesn’t play defense, so he’s only able to have an effect on half of the game. Lebron James, on the other hand, can conceivably play every minute. This makes the outcome inherently less random, and the length of the NBA’s schedule and the playoffs series format make it even less random. These dynamics combine to make the NBA the sports world’s truest meritocracy. This is why, barring injury, you will undoubtedly see Lebron James in the finals again this year. And, he will be matched against another team with a marquee star. Maybe Stephen Curry, again. Maybe Tim Duncan, again. Maybe Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, again. Maybe James Harden, again.

But while some NBA distractors cite this as the reason why they prefer the NFL, they’re conveniently forgetting that the exact same dynamic exists in the NFL. And in college football. And even in college basketball. The same five or six teams win the title every year. Look it up if you don’t believe me. The only thing separating how these sports are perceived from how the NBA is perceived is the concept of hope. Which basically just means that they just have better PR. 

And this is the second dumbest reason to hate NBA basketball.

Damon Young

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB. He is also a columnist for GQ.com And he's working on a book of essays to be published by Ecco (HarperCollins). Damon is busy. He lives in Pittsburgh, and he really likes pancakes. Reach him at damon@verysmartbrothas.com. Or don't. Whatever.

  • Brandon Allen

    I’m just glad basketball is back. All is right with the world and my Tuesday and Thursday evenings have meaning again.

    Cavs in 7 over Oklahoma City

    • Brass Tacks

      You got KD returning to MVP form?

      • Brandon Allen

        Yup. Honestly, I just want OKC to humble Golden State. They’ve gotten to cocky for my taste.

        • Don’t sleep on the Clippers.

          • Brandon Allen

            They just need someone to play the three. Lance’s shot is BROKE.

            • Brass Tacks

              Lance blows me. I was thinking he would be a lot better than he really is at this point in his career.

            • Paul Pierce is in the building. Isn’t Reddick’s no defense playing @ss still there?

              • Brandon Allen

                Reddick starts at the 2. Paul can only give you like 15 minutes at this point.

                • Brass Tacks

                  And id use em all in the fourth qtr

                • That’s all you need from him. Jamaal Crawford leads that second unit.

        • Val

          No.

    • OKC, Cleveland, Golden State or San Antonio. Whoever stays healthier wins the title.

      • Damon Young

        “Whoever stays healthier wins the title.”

        Agreed with this. But, if all teams are healthy, no one is beating the Cavs

        • Brandon Allen

          Mo Williams is going to be the sneaky pickup.

          • Damon Young

            i love mo williams, but the less he has to be on the court, the better

            • Brandon Allen

              Mo > Delly

            • Kyrie has to play at least 50 games.

          • QueLoQue

            Not even sneaky, really. The Cavs needed someone to run point when Kyrie Irving is out (beside LeBron, of course). I know LeBron can do anything, but there was too much pressure on him to do everything last year.

            • I would have loved to see them get Jeremy Lin.

            • Brandon Allen

              People acting like Mo is done for some reason. There’s only one thing Mo does and that’s get buckets. Anything is an improvement over Delly.

              • QueLoQue

                Absolutely. The Cavs really don’t need much, just a couple guys to give them some depth in case of injury. It would also help if coach actually used those guys; during the playoffs last year homie dragged his starters through the finals when he had Kendrick Perkins and Shawn Marion on the bench. They aren’t in their primes but they could have given the starters some minutes.

                • CleveCavClan

                  We went 11 deep against the Bulls and Memphis.

                  Richard Jefferson and Andy V look dope.

                  When Kyrie and Shump come back it is murder city. When healthy last year we murdered the Ws and ‘Bron was basically goofing off throwing up 40 footers like fk it

        • Julian Green

          The dark hoodoo that sucks all of the joy out of Cleveland will beat the Cavs.

        • Val

          That’s what you said last year.

          Go Warriors!

          • Brandon Allen

            BOOOOO WARRIORS!

          • Damon Young

            i did. and it was true. the warriors were the healthiest team. but, if every team is playing at full strength, its the cavs title to lose

          • Exactly! Talk that truth!

  • Julian Green

    Still, I can’t help feeling jaded with the NBA.

    Fcuk it. I’m watching hockey this year.

    • LadyIbaka

      I like ice hockey! That’s the one they beat each other with sticks!!!!

    • Brotha, quit lying.

      • Julian Green

        I think it’ll be a good look. It’s got all the speed, athleticism, and space for individual skill that I enjoy about basketball but with the physicality that the NBA is trying to legislate out of the game.

        Also, the games don’t last as long and there’s a strong possibility that you’ll see somebody get duffed out.

        • CleveCavClan

          Every sport is legislating out physicality. stars getting hurt makes the game ugggggh. NFL been doing that for a minute

        • Soccer is much more fun, but less chaotic. Hockey, to me looks like a pick up game every possession. No plan, just shoot if you’re open.

    • Hockey is great live. The fights get exciting. On TV it falls kinda flat.

      • Epsilonicus

        I feel the same about baseball

        • I like it on TV. I used to play softball so I think that has something to do with why I can tolerate it so well.

        • Brandon Allen

          I feel like baseball was just for a different time when you had nothing at all to do on a summer day. You go to the field and eat cracker jacks and what not.

          • miss t-lee

            I prefer seeing it live, over watching it on television.
            Watching it on television (outside of the world series) equals naptime.

        • Julian Green

          I’ve been to a few baseball games. My granddaddy’s a big fan, but I just could never get into it.

      • DBoySlim

        You ain’t never lied. I went to Joe Louis Arena with some friends who had never been to a hockey game. They were amazed at how much they enjoyed it.

      • miss t-lee

        We had a minor league team here for a while. Won free tickets and went.
        It was a great time.

      • Julian Green

        Honestly, I wanted to hop on the whole Blackhawks wave when I was living up in Chicago, but I didn’t want to look like a bandwagoner so I never went to any games.

        • I think I only agreed to go to a Flyers game because they signed a black player. So, I would always advise to go with your pettier instincts.

      • Epsilonicus

        My college women’s hockey team had Olympians so women’s hockey was the largest sport on campus. It was a good time.

      • Damon Young

        i’ve heard

    • Brass Tacks

      C. A. P. S. CAPS! CAPS! CAPS!

  • miss t-lee

    I don’t hate the NBA, however I don’t really start paying attention to it until Christmas, and after the Super Bowl.
    I watched the opening game last night because #GoSpursGo, however, I’m pretty sure I won’t see another game until December.

    • I won’t pay attention until April probably. I just follow players.

  • DBoySlim

    I think the NHL might be the only league with parity. There were 9 different champions from 2k until now.

  • I just can’t watch regular season NBA games because I don’t care enough. I follow Lebron and Duncan’s activities through the season, watch highlights, and pay attention to the playoffs. I simply just like football better no reasoning or whys I’d just rather watch a bad regular season football game as opposed to a bad NBA game. It could be that scarcity adds value since I only get at minimum 18 or so games a year in football.

    • miss t-lee

      I feel like that also. The football season is so short compared to basketball, or even baseball.
      So it makes me definitely not want to miss any games.

      • I only get a few chances to watch Oakland soil the sheets a year. I also count football pro and college as a complete weekend too.

        • miss t-lee

          Oh, it most definitely is.
          Add HS to the mix on Fridays, and yup. Weekend solid.

          • True because I still follow my high school’s team.

            • miss t-lee

              Yup.

        • Epsilonicus

          I cannot get into college football. I love pro football though

          • Luckily, only a handful of conferences matter for sports on the collegiate level.

          • Val

            I was getting into college football becasue there are so many games on free TV. But now the championship game is on cable, which I don’t have, so what’s the point in watching the regular season games.

          • College football is great. It’s based on a lot of actual hatred, classism, and repping where you are from.

            • Did you know NCA&T is nationally ranked??!!?!??!

              • I saw that the other day.

                • They’d still get smashed by the other teams but I’d love to see them play a similarly matched big D-I school.

                  • I was hoping SC State would win the MEAC but nah.

                    • They haven’t been on a hot streak since I graduated a few years back.

                    • tgtaggie

                      I’m going to do a birdman hand rub when A&T beats SC State next weekend lol

              • Sigma_Since 93

                Yup. I hope they don’t screw up at Central, win the MEAC, and don’t get hosed with a crappy seed come 1AA playoff time.

                • Ehhhh I was considering going to the Central game but WSSU’s Homecoming is this weekend and my mama want me to do stuff with her so she can parade me around to her old classmates and flex -_____-

                  • Sigma_Since 93

                    Be happy you are Hott Toddin material! lol!

                    • I don’t enjoy being a pawn though lol They be sliding me plates at the tailgate so I tolerate it. I don’t pass up a free meal.

                  • Julian Green

                    NCCU; we exist to ruin the Aggies weekend.

                    Eagle Pride? Amplified!

          • Sigma_Since 93

            College football is awesome; not everyone has a pro team. I wonder who folks in Montana or Idaho cheer for during football, baseball, and basketball season? The college game / love is real.

      • Val

        Hockey season never ends. They play the championship and start the new season the next day. Lol Or so it seems.

        • Basically.

        • miss t-lee

          You know way more about hockey than I do…lol

          • Val

            Only becasue there is a NHL team near me and they go on about them on the local news.

            • miss t-lee

              Ah!

            • San Jose? They barely mention them on the sports station I listen to from San Fran that carries the Raider games 95.7

              • Val

                Yep. The Sharks. You listen to the Raider games on Radio? I don’t even know what station they come on. I’m forced to watch them every week on TV.

                • It’s on 95.7 in San Francisco

                  • Val

                    Oh yeah, that’s “The Game” I think. I never listen to it.

        • menajeanmaehightower

          Hockey, baseball, basketball, and soccer never end. Honestly, i feel like you need a degree to fully understand the seasons in soccer. Like, soccer has different leagues, 83 championships, country championships, the pope championship. It’s a lot.

    • Pinks

      This is how I feel. There are like 9457013975457235643895734492374238 basketball games on at any time, so I don’t mind missing one or thirteen games.

      NFL on the other hand is much less frequent so it feels like every Sunday is an event. At least in la casa de pinks

      • miss t-lee

        Shiiddd. I just check the scores. I’m pretty sure I only see about 30 games of any NBA season every year.

    • I don’t know if the scarcity of football makes me value it more, but the abundance of basketball games does make me annoyed. Also the playoff setup for the NBA is stupid to me. If I beat you once then that should be enough for me to move onto the next round.

      • Nick Peters

        It is a way to make sure the best team always win and stars sell

        • Blah blah blah, it’s a way for the league to make more money and nothing deeper than that.

          • Nick Peters

            So I guess you got so excited to come at me that you missed that we basically said the same thing…as more stars = bigger ratings = more $ for NBA when it’s time to renigotiate contracts.

    • Dougie

      casual fans like football better because it’s easier to follow and it’s a lot slower.

      • Nick Peters

        And the games mean more 16 vs. 82

      • Ger Wil

        and you dont have to set your fantasy roster every…..darn,…day

    • Ger Wil

      Yea,, regular season means so little in NBA. Now College BB……ill tune in ALL season. Because my March Madness Bracket is NOT finna be looking like i picked my winners from a Bingo™ cage!

      • I’ve never been able to get into College Basketball.

        I pay attention to the tournament, but for the most part I’d rather watch a regular season game.

    • I’m the opposite, I care too much. I even watch the Preseason games and pre and postgame interviews. EVERYTHING. I am a Warriors fanatic. (American) Football bores me though lol.

  • Val

    If most a sport’s games come on cable then it’s really hard for me to care about said sport. I’m cableless. One of the reasons I love NFL football is because most of the games come on free TV including most of the play-offs and the championship game.

  • SirKnows DevoidofPunk

    I like the NBA because Steph Curry, Blake, Westbrook, D. Lillard, Zach Levin (2015 Slam Dunk WInner)… Go right down the rosters and you’ll see that all the lightskinned-ed-ed fellows and them tall Euro dudes is taking over again.

    NBA = Nonconfrontational Beige Athletes.

    Before you know it, basketball will be back to the good old days of “hustle” and “bringing your lunch pail to work” and “fundamentals” and “respectabilty”… and most importantly:

    short shorts and short haircuts.

    • Brass Tacks

      NBA = Nonconfrontational Beige Athletes.

      Ha!

    • miss t-lee

      “NBA = Nonconfrontational Beige Athletes”

      Yeesh.

    • But are we really surprised by the beigeness? A good number of players from the 80s wifed up white women lol.

      • SirKnows DevoidofPunk

        TRUTH.

    • Another reason I can’t watch the league, Super Athletic Alpha Men should not be softer than me.

  • I was wondering when the NBA article would go up and here it is. It’s a good time for NBA junkies such as myself. Good games last night too, Kawhi is a problem.

    P.S. Go Sixers

  • IsitFridayyet?

    I just want the Bucks to do well this season.

    • They just lost to the Knicks…

      • CleveCavClan

        without The Greek and Jabari tho

  • Football is on a slow but eventual decline.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Io6hPdC41RM

    • Dougie

      Wut? You trolling?

      • Nah for real.

        I mean it will still exist, but with all the lawsuits and head traumas, the rules and liability are going to mess up the game. A kid even died during a football game the other day…and he was a QB.

        • Dougie

          ah, THAT’S where you’re going with that. I understand now. I automatically assumed popularity and got confused because the NFL is at a height in popularity because of fantasy football. In fact, they have the highest commercial revenue of any television show because football (and basketball) are the only shows that people don’t change the channel when there’s a commercial.

          I do think that the NFL will have some big problems very soon, but I still think that football dying is not an option. Baseball will die first.

          • No doubt, football is king, and will remain so for the near future. What’s gonna kill it is the rules that are going to enforced. This has been going for a long time. I know a lot of hardcore fans who get irritated by all the touch fouls and QB protections, that exist now. It’s going to become more blatant and more applicable over the next couple of years.

            • Dougie

              I agree with you there for sure.

        • AlwaysCC

          i’m waiting on someone to form a pro/semi-pro flag football league lol

          • Val

            I’d watch. Lol

    • You know what else is on a decline? Will Smith’s trash “Nigerian” accent.

      • How can something be in decline that never existed lol.

        • True. I just wanted to take a shot at Will Smith’s trash accent.

          • is it really that hard to do tho lol. With all the Nigerian movies out there?

            • His people failed him. Plop the brother down and make him marathon some Nollywood flix or something.

              • Shid, I’d do it myself as long as I get to smoke whatever thing he got his kids on.

    • BlueWave1

      Yeah, it is. There was an article in the LA Times recently about the dramatic decline of high school football participants here in Southern California. This area has always been a hotbed for football talent. But coaches here are really starting to get anxious as the incoming classes of football players are getting smaller and smaller.

      • A couple months ago, even Pres. Obama was like, if he had a son, he wouldn’t let him play football. So yeah, it’s terrible, but for people who’ve been football heads for a long time, they’ve already seen all the changes that are increasingly removing the grittiness from the game.

    • Nick Peters

      Too many poor black and Samoan people for Football to really decline…name another meritocracy were black men can make LARGE sums of $? It will just get Blacker and Browner

      • Well, most NFL guys want to go into the NBA, so there’s that, not to mention the contracts are so much better when compared. Even then, the NFL will never allow the white position of QB to ever be completely black, and as long as there’s that glimmer of hope, white folks are going to make the league change.

        • Nick Peters

          What if you are 6 foot 5 and 300 pounds, 5 foot 10, or can’t shoot a basketball?

    • miss t-lee

      Football ain’t going nowhere.

    • Val

      By slow do you mean over the next 50 years? Because as popular as the sport is I think it would take that long for any serious loss of fans. The media has gone crazy of late with the concussion stories and the high school deaths but they don’t give any perspective.

      How many kids are killed in biking accidents? Skateboarding? Swimming? And how many Lacrosse players suffer concussions? Soccer players? Hockey players?

      Probably more than in football but because football is so popular it’s a target for the media.

      Don’t believe the hype.

      • You’re not looking at a loss of fans. The problem is a potential loss of talent, much like boxing took about 20 years ago.

        • Val

          What loss of fans? College football and the NFL are more popular than ever. And although I don’t follow high school football it’s still a huge part of American culture.

          • Loss of talent, not loss of fans.

      • It’s not so much the hype, I actually listened to the guy who the Will Smith movie is based on. It’s a liability issue. It’s not going to change through the fans, the lawsuits and pressure on the NFL’s neck is going to force them to fundamentally change the way the game is played. Which they’ve already been doing, just by bits and pieces. And due to their size, there a lot more money at risk.

        But like I said, it’s going to be very gradual, it might take 50 years. Hardcore football fans, who’ve been watching the game for a long time, already notice the changes as they’ve happened.

        • Val

          I saw the doc too. But, we all know the media hypes stuff up. Like I said, where is the perspective? The media gives none. It doesn’t compare football to other sports. It just says OMG this is happening in football.

          • Not just the media, the guys actual work. I read up on it. The media hypes everything, good or bad. Like I said, I don’t think the media matters as much here, it’s all the stuff happening in the court rooms that I think is going to catch up with football overtime.

      • miss t-lee

        I watched the documentary “League of Denial”. Highly recommended for folks who wanna see it.
        Even then, with all the scientific evidence, folks are still wanting to play the game. Every sport has risk, and folks who really want to play it know those risks. And, they still choose to play.
        That’s why I don’t see football dying out.

        • Brass Tacks

          Thanks

          • miss t-lee

            Sure.
            Let me know what you think.

      • Damon Young

        there are less and less kids playing, because less and less parents are allowing them to play, and because it’s getting harder and harder to insure. that’s happening everywhere, even in football crazy states like ohio, pa, and texas.

        • Val

          True but my point was the numbers aren’t dropping at some huge rate. The media makes it seems as though that’s the case though.

          • miss t-lee

            Especially not here. There is not a huge decline.

    • Football is only going to start to decline when another sport that’s popular among Black kids takes root and is marketable in the billions of dollars. That’s it.

      • I think the game itself is going to change, and become so conscious that it will cause fans to not have much interest. I don’t think it’s going to be due to anything else. Rules are going to kill it’s popularity.

More Like This