Thursday, November 10, 2005

Why People Hate the NBA

Jack MacCallum has a great column on all the unjust criticism that the NBA recieves. Patrick Hubry had a similar NBA Myths column a short while ago also.

I love the NBA. I'm one of the few true NBA fans out there, it's my favorite sports league, college or pro. The players are the most athletic and graceful of all the sports. I think it's the best blend of induvidual and team skills out there.

Everyonce in awhile I'll hear a friend who isn't a real big basketball fan talk about how they just can't watch the NBA anymore. The most common reasons are A) the players are all thugs, B) they just don't call traveling, C) no one tries and D) the players are all thugs.

First of all, the whole 'thug' issue is border line racist. Oh Ron Artest, Kobe Bryant, see? Iverson and his problems. His tirade versus practice. Latrel Spreewell.

How about Ray Lewis? One of the most undercovered sports trials I've ever seen. How about Leonard Little? Heard of him? He's a DE for the St Louis Rams, he killed a woman while driving drunk. Then he got a DUI a couple years later. Um? Ray Caruth? The starting running back for the Baltimore Ravens spent time in JAIL this offseason! There's the whole TO stink right now (I'm not linking to any TO news, I'm sick of it) I know it's not anywhere near as serious as the aformentioned, but he's a selfish showboat, which I thought everyone hated about the NBA?

How about Ugueth Urbina? Or Doc Gooden?

My point roughly the same as MacCallum's:
Barry Bonds acts like an idiot and that's on Barry Bonds. Terrell Owens acts
like an idiot, and that's on Terrell Owens. Iverson rants about how he dislikes
practice, and that's on the entire NBA. I can't even imagine what people would
be saying if the NBA had a steroid problem like the one plaguing baseball right
now. Or if Iverson had torn apart the 76ers in the same fashion that Owens
tore apart the Philadelphia Eagles this season, I honestly feel he would've had
to fear for his life.

Is it race? The NBA is the blackest of all the sports leagues, by far. It's also the one most linked to hip-hop culture. The baggy pants, the corn rows, all that. Black players in baseball had cornrows (I know Lofton had them for awhile, all I remebered is that I missed the flat top), and NFL players do to. But Joe Public never really sees them. NFL players have helmets on, baseball have caps. The NBA players are right out there, tank top and shorts. You see the tatoos, the emotions, the cornrows- everything. It's definitely more raw/in your face. All I know is when some one says "I hate the NBA, its full of thugs" I get a little irked.

Maybe it's not, I dunno. I do know that it's not just me who thinks this. Jason Whitlock had a great column(Insider$) about the Olympic basketball team when they sucked it up in the olympics. All those tatooed and the cornrowed millionaires misrepresenting our country. Bah.

As for the traveling nonsense... My buddy pulled this gem out the other day, "I just can't watch the NBA, they never call traveling anymore." I'm sorry, but this is the lamest excuse to not watch a sport. Just say you don't like basketball, its okay. Like man, I never watch football anymore, they just never call offensive pass interference. I used to like baseball, but the guys never really touch second base on the double plays anymore.

Do NBA players travel? It happens *cough* LeBron* cough. But it's not like there's an epidemic of walking going on. It maybe happens once a game. If this is what is keeping you away from the NBA, then stay away.

As for the whole 'not trying' complaint... Are the most tense minutes in a football game the beginning? How about baseball? Are early innings more intense than late? Basketball is the same way. They try the entire time, no one is loafing around. It's just, as the fourth quarter is closing down, the intensity picks up.

I dunno, I love the NBA, despite and because of its faults. I love the 45 month playoff system. And how the last 2 minutes of the fourth quarter take 20. (Cue lame ending) I love this game.


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Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

I'm sorry. Race has nothing to do with it. Look at the popularity of college basketball. Same players, only younger. The NBA has lost all style and grace. Bird, Magic and Michael were something to watch.

Today's players have turned a "non-contact" sport into a violent brawl. They play for themselves and play like, well, thugs. And does anyone really care about the final of Sacramento versus Oklahoma City?

You're right. Most people care very little about the NBA. But, you're wrong. Race isn't the reason.

Anonymous said...

This is a strange viewpoint, it makes me wonder if the author's paycheck is somehow tied to the NBA. To me thats the only way anyone could be an actual fan of this streetball league. Growing up in Indiana in the seventies and eighties basketball was at the center of everything I enjoyed and wanted. Like most young Indiana boys of that time I dreamed of playing basketball for my highschool and maybe for Bobby Knight at IU. It was so much fun to watch and to play and pretend like you were your heroes. A kid shoots a three and shouts BIRD or goes to the hole and shouts JORDAN. I agree that the athletes in the NBA are super human and graceful. But they just don't seem to care. The integrity of the game has been compromised in this league to make room for more slam dunks and ally oops. Professional basketball should be more difficult the rules should be more strict. If the players are that good they should be able to play within the rules. The game has changed to add to the glitz and dazzle of the most athletic players which down plays the importance of being the most skilled. I love basketball and I miss watching it on the professional level. I still watch college because the rules are observed by the NCAA. In the NBA they don't call Carry-Traveling-Reaching in-OVer the Back to name a few. I don't like the thug comments I think that is unfair grouping. There are bad people in every profession. If I am ever going to watch the NBA again it will have to drastically change. Stop making it so easy on these guys I think you should foul out after 5 and you play within the rules. I think the one thing that bothers me the most is the carry call. If you have ever played basketball you would know that you can pretty much render a defender helpless by carrying the ball. This is not football COME ON. I am a guy who grew up with the nba and I haven't watched a game in about 7-8 years

Anonymous said...

The only people that watch NBA basketball anymore are black guys in prison. The sport sucks and dont tell me the athletes are world class. Most can't make a mid-range jumpshot on a consistent basis. I will stick with the college game where the players actually care if they win.

Anonymous said...

To the idiot who wrote this post, The only person who made this about race is you. Thugs can be of any race, every sport has issues with crimes. However the real reason people are being turned off to the NBA is the way the game has changed, they seem to be all good friends out on the court, the viewers want to see the rivals that use to be a huge part of this game. The art of defence is missing and too many players making too much money-just like in all the sports. The only racist person is the one who wrote this story.

Anonymous said...

The NBA is a complete misrepresentation of the game of basketball. where are the rules???? Why is it that you can tear someones head off during a lay-up in first quarter but let your pinky nail graze Kobe in the final 4 or 5 minutes its a foul? wtf? i quit watching this crap somewhere in the early 90's. it's a joke! everyone quit watching so the league loosened the rules even MORE. if this is the way the NBA wants to play, simply change the rules! and that little half circle bs under the goal?? apparently u can nuke someone inside there and it is still a defensive foul. BS i hope the league goes bankrupt very, very soon

Anonymous said...

i agree with many of the posters here. it's not about race; rather it's about the perception of competitiveness. the jordan rules worked at the time; however, in this day and age, you need to call fouls (turnovers, etc.) fairly. people like the fact that in college, with the exception of duke, most games are called competitively and fair. the nba is an ugly me-first, isolation sport that was once considered a team sport.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with the poster. One of the main reason why most people hate the league it's mostly an African American league.

If there's altercations in the league, I'll hear people say "what a bunch of thugs". Nobody says anything about hockey, baseball, or even altercations in nascar.

In the 70s, as more blacks entered the league, popularity went down til Larry entered. Back then people openly said they didn't care for the league because of race. Watch popularity increase if more Dirks and nashs go in the NBA

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