I can’t remember an NBA postseason generating this much excitement ever. We’re all watching, even without our hometown teams in the game in many cases.
Over at Grantland, Bill Simmons has some amazing points to consider…
You may have noticed this, but the NBA is back. Not since Michael Jordan was coughing up mucus on Ahmad Rashad in Utah has the league been this compelling: personified by its incredible 2011 Finals, currently riding a four-game “Games That Will Be Shown On ESPN Classic” streak. The NBA has more marketable stars than every other American team sport combined. Its three biggest markets (Los Angeles, New York, and Chicago) feature three playoff teams, five of the best 15 players, the reigning MVP (Derrick Rose), one of the 10-best players ever (Kobe Bryant), and the league’s most exciting young star (Blake Griffin). Its signature franchise (Miami) has been the single most polarizing American sports team since … since … (wait, has there ever been a more polarizing American sports team?). Even better, the league has gravitated toward an NFL-type model in which fans watch playoff games no matter who’s involved, as we found out during the Oklahoma City-Memphis series.
So with all of this excitement, how is it possible that the league could be losing $300 million? Short answer, the players made $2.1 billion dollars while fans continued to sneer at season tickets.
For the long answer, including ludicrous free agency, the proliferation of LCD television and absurdly long guaranteed contracts, head over at the link below.