THE NBA IS BAK! That's the text I read from one of my closest friends and biggest basketball fans. Honestly at the time, 8am, I didn't care and went back to sleep. It didn't come full circle till later in the day, but The League is truly back and what a great way to package it to us basketball fans than on Christmas day.
What was I thinking that college hoops could actually replace the NBA. Yes Barnes, Sullinger, and the crop of incoming lottery picks would be good to watch but last year we tuned in to the greatest NBA season we'd ever seen; it was like watching a great AMC series. You had your villain (Miami), the thrilling story line (#8Memphis upsetting #1San Antonio in an amazing back & forth series, OkCity battling a surprisingly good rebuilt mid-season Denver Nuggets team in round 1, the return of the Knicks), and finally a great ending with Dirk & Company overcoming the despised Heat (1), led by Jason Terry's heroic Game 2 never give up attitude.
Last year was great and if it's any indication of what this year will be like then the NBA shortened season will seem like a sequel on steroids. Here's some of the most intriguing things to see this go-around:
Anything involving The Heat including the players that DEFECT to them (2), Can Dallas repeat as champs facing a supersonic season with old vets, Destinations of Chris Paul & Dwight Howard, Barkley & Shaq team up on TNT (insert joke here ___, too many come to mind), Can Bill Clinton work his magic once more & rescue the players locked up for a season in China, How strange will it be to use the name Meta World Peace especially announcers AND Marv Albert, Can The Bulls or Thunder finally break through... & the return of Durant's backpack, Ricky Rubio's arrival & his potential fantasy impact with the uptempo offense they'll be running this year, How much better can Amare & Melo get (3) given a whole season, plus who's joining them in Ny, And all of this happening while David West is shouting to everyone, "HEYYYY I'M HERE! WHAT ABOUT ME!?"
Anyway, thank you Billy Hunter and David Stern for resolving the lockout, basketball fans have been salivating at the mouth for the start of this season. So fire up the ESPN Trade Machine, do your fantasy mock drafts, and check Bleacher Report until you're sick from speculation, the show that is the NBA has been renewed.
1: I loved the feeling of being able to show up at any bar last Finals, sitting next to Lakers die hard Celts or any other teams' fans, sharing hate for The Heat. I'll always remember the time we shared together America.
2: I say "defect" because that's exactly what it feels like. Vets betraying the rest of the league, piggy-backing off of Wade & LeBron to a championship including YOU Battier. I loved you Shane, you were a blue collar guy that kept quiet & did his work toiling on mediocre teams for years. While I don't wish any serious damage to you, I do hope age catches up and you're no longer able to help the Heat in any way.
3: Honestly they wont be able to get past the 2nd round of the playoffs barring a major fix. My solution: Fire D'Antoni and get a defensive minded coach OR acquire a defensive center/leader that inspires a defensive culture like what Tyson Chandler did for the Mavs last year. Maybe this is a reach but how bout running the triangle while in the half court set? Anthony & Stoudemire can be the next Kobe & Pau, AND this forces Melo to GIVE UP THE DANG BALL! Tired of seeing him stall the offense more than this guy does his next train of thought: Your text to link... *Do not go past :34 mark of this clip.
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