66 games. 2 teams. 1 championship. I see you looked at the title and are literally saying things like “What the hell?” or “He can’t be serious.” Something that will make you either stop reading or get mad as you read this. But the last time I checked, the full season was 82 games. Oh yeah, I forgot. Thanks to a lockout, the season was shortened by “the god of basketball” David Stern and Oklahoma City (formerly LA Lakers) point guard Derek Fisher. If you didn’t know, Fisher is the president of the Players’ Association. Yet, somehow he’s in the Finals…conspiracies??? Another time for that conversation.
But anyways, here we are at the NBA Finals between the Miami Heat and the Seattle Sonics aka Oklahoma City Thunder, which begin on Tuesday night at 9PM EST on your ABC affiliate. To many, this is going to be as good of a series since the Lakers/Celtics matchups of 2008 and 2010. The media (especially ESPN) are hyping this series as LeBron vs. Durant.
Why do I call this a “tainted title?”
I call it that because 1) 66 games for the regular season, it hurt a lot of teams and their postseason runs. 2) The scheduling. No way in the world that Stern thought playing 5-6 games a week would help the athletes do well on their respective teams. Some of them weren’t used to that. Many star players like Derrick Rose and Dwight Howard both have significant injuries and can’t even participate for the Olympic team in London. Those are two key losses to a team that just got back to prominence after winning the gold back in 2008 in Beijing. 3) Terrible officiating. Oh my Lord. I bet anyone on here that reads this can name the sorry officials from each game that made you throw something or even cuss at the TV. The way they put this season together made it seem like they went and got high school officials to call these games. I mean this was absurd and just plain ridiculous. It was like Stern meant to put those guys out there to get this outcome that we are at now. The NBA Finals. I almost swear this was a complete set-up from the jump. 4) Money. There shouldn’t be anything said after that. But that is what this whole thing was all about. Like any other sport, money is the key to having a season. This season was almost lost in its entirety. Stern and his staff had to rush through and put together which is what was supposed to be an “effective” season. All Stern thought about was those advertising dollars, the under the table deals (don’t act like there weren’t any), the TV contracts, the attendance for the respective games and IMHO nothing about the players’ themselves. Even though the players’ were just looking for their piece of the pie. While we get mad at them about their egos’ and all, they still go out and play every night. Am I ok? Am I really defending the players? The ones that tick me off so bad that they should play overseas somewhere and not in the States. I’m defending players like Carlos Boozer, LeBron James, Kobe Bryant…the names I can’t stand?? Really? Yeah I am. Because at the same time, they get a check cut every two weeks like you and I (the ones that have jobs).
My point is: This is not the real 82-game season, just like San Antonio back in ’99 which wasn’t a real title win with the 50-game season. Look who they played against in the Finals…the 8th seeded New York Knicks…with “I’ll choke my coach because I don’t like what he tells me” Latrell Sprewell on (LITERALLY) “Grandmama” Larry Johnson. So what about their banner sticking up in the AT&T Center being a title team. That season was a joke from start to finish. Just like that game on Showtime which was called “The Game on Showtime” where it featured 10 NBA players playing in Vegas for charity. I might as well just had that and didn’t need the season. The reason why all of this was going down…again MONEY!
Anyways, the match-up is great honestly (even though I still think it’s a set-up), these two teams do have effective teams that (believe it or not) provide championship experience from both sides. The Thunder are definitely young and Durant should enjoy this series win or lose. The Heat however are under a microscope…if they lose, they might as well dismantle that team. I want to see that happen, so bad. OKC’s legs should be fresher than the Heat’s after their 7 game affair with Boston. But maybe it was a blessing for those teams. This is what the fans have been really waiting for which is the top 2 players in the league right now going head-to-head for that picture, aka the Larry O’Brien trophy.
All from the destructive mind of David Stern. Thanks Mr. Stern for destroying the league that you have built up. You wonder why most sports fans wait for football season to come around. You’re an imbecile and an idiot. But I still will watch your sport till there is no more.