Celtics-Lakers!…Snooze

Wait a second...

I don’t like the NBA. This series won’t help any.

The NBA Finals start on Thursday night, and everyone is already getting all nostalgic and gooey on us.

This is big. No, this is huge. This is the biggest, hugest thing in the history of ever, or since the last time they played. Some of the best players in the game will be facing off. In one city, movie stars will be in attendance. In the other, drunken Irish people will be chanting “Beat L.A.!” over and over again and attempting to learn how to pronounce the letter R. Who isn’t excited about this series?

You guessed it, this guy.

My disdain for the NBA is pretty well documented on this site. Of the many reasons why I dislike the NBA, there are three things that characterize the general state of piss and vinegar with which I approach the league.

  1. The lack of defense: Specifically in the West, watching a NBA game is more like watching a game of HORSE than a two-sided affair.
  2. The San Antonio Spurs: I know, I know, die-hard basketball fans. They play the game right and technical and blah. I don’t care, they bore the living hell out of me. Their dominance during my impressionable years are probably a big reason for my lack of interest in professional basketball.
  3. Celtics-Lakers

Most everything about the Celtics-Lakers rivalry in 2010 floods me with indifference. It is the perfect example of media digging too far for hype. It showcases two teams that feature the aspect of basketball that has always bothered me. Kevin Garnett is involved, and quite honestly, I really don’t like him.

Promoting Celtics-Lakers as some monumental rivalry today would be a lot like pumping up a Royals-Yankees set because they had a budding rivalry in the late 1970s. Sure, there are probably some fans that experienced that period that still carry an enthusiasm for the rivalry, but for the most part, nobody outside of them cares.

No longer in action.

These are not the Showtime Lakers against the grind-them-out Larry Bird Celtics. That is an era that will likely never be duplicated because it was the combination of a number of clashes, not just a rivalry between two teams. No matter how many times ESPN shoves old Boston-L.A. footage down our throats, few people outside of those two cities are going to view this as anything other than another series.

I don’t need to hear Kobe Bryant answer five million questions about what the Celtics-Lakers rivalry means to him. He was living in Italy when Magic Johnson and Bird had the entire thing at its peak, dammit.

The NBA is a league that features individual stars more prominently than any other major pro league. And it comes natural to the league because basketball is a sport where one or two players can completely change the outlook and potential of a franchise.

I know this, I understand it and yet it still bothers me.

The fact that the Celtics were able make the greatest turn around in NBA history by basically bringing in two players still irks me. Most people will probably say “Yeah, so, that’s basketball,” but I just simply cannot. Changing the entire fabric of a team with two players is mind-boggling for someone who grew up on football and baseball.

And at PF...Al Jefferson?

The Clippers, per usual, were not good this season and finished 12th in the Western Conference. But say they go and add LeBron and Chris Bosh this offseason. They’re immediate title contenders.

Yes, I’m on my blue-collar work ethic high horse right now, but I just don’t find any integrity or passion in that. Free agency has worn the bond between players and cities tired in other sports, but none as much as basketball. Every arena looks the same, every player is transient. Who cares where you’re playing?

Hell, LeBron grew up an hour drive away from the Cavaliers, and it is beginning to look more and more like he feels no attachment to the city. I guess I can’t blame him. I’ve never really been a Magic fan.

Combine the renovated Celtics with a Lakers team that is carried by one man, and you have the definition of why I don’t care about the NBA, and I care even less about this year’s NBA Finals.

I’m excited to watch NASCAR at Pocono this weekend. I’m pumped to watch the Rays battle out of this slump and see what the Braves do as we approach our anticipated inter-league series in two weeks. I’m maybe most excited about the World Cup which I am highly looking forward to watching.

USA vs. England, June 12.

But not the NBA Finals. Sorry, Boston and L.A.

-Bryan

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7 Comments

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7 responses to “Celtics-Lakers!…Snooze

  1. Kyle

    My disdain for the NBA is for mainly different reasons (although I hate Duncan and the Spurs, too), but I can’t really disagree with anything you’ve said. The addition of one or two great players completely changing the roster doesn’t bother me, though, and you should look at it from a numbers perspective.

    There are 5 starters in basketball. usually 5 or 6 bench guys, 7 at the most. So ~12 active players. Compare that to a 25 man roster in baseball, or a 53 man roster in football.

    If the Clippers got LeBron and Bosh, they’d be overhauling 40% of their starting roster. That’s like if your beloved Rays went and got Hanley Ramirez at SS, Joe Mauer at C, Chase Utley at 2B, and Prince Fielder at 1B. Or perhaps the Bucs getting 9 new Pro Bowl starters.

    I realize this example is kind of a stupid example, but just think of it from a numbers perspective.

    Having said all of that, I absolutely loathe this supposed Lakers/Celtics super rivalry. If you have to search for reasons for them to be rivals, they aren’t fucking rivals. The media (see, ESPN) does such a piss poor job of being rational and unbiased that it makes me want to vomit.

    As a whole, I liked the NBA the least of the 4 major sports. I mean, I loved the Sonics, but I hate hate hate David Stern.

    I apologize for the novel of a comment. Good work Mr. Holt.

  2. Oh, Bryan Holt… Spoken like a man who pays zero attention to basketball.

    “Promoting Celtics-Lakers as some monumental rivalry today would be a lot like pumping up a Royals-Yankees set because they had a budding rivalry in the late 1970s.”

    It would be like pumping up a Royals-Yankees set if the Royals and Yankees were the two best teams in the league and had a 50-year history of meeting in the finals.

    You don’t really believe the Lakers are a one-man team, right?

    Tremendous double standard in your whole “changing the entire fabric of a team” spiel when juxtaposed with baseball. See Yankees, New York (and every other club).

    I started laughing at soccer… I won’t even dignify that with a response. Seems like we’re both victims of ESPN’s hype machine.

    Slightly irritated, but good natured mini-rant over.

    • bholt11

      The NBA sucks. As a country song once said, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

      Do the Yankees try to do this every year? Yes. However, their best teams still came when their core was completely homegrown with blue collar role players. I’m still convinced that the best baseball teams are built from the farm system up.

      And don’t laugh at soccer. It does not make an ESPN hype machine to make me love the World Cup. It’s been one fo my favorite events since I was a little kid. Great stuff, and I may or may not watch broadcasts on the Spanish channel so that I can get the action a couple seconds faster than ESPN.

      I know that we’ll never see eye to eye on this whole basketball thing, but I know one thing that we can both agree upon. I hope my team kicks your team’s ass in two weeks.

  3. Johnny

    This is a horrible post. You hate that there’s no D and fundamentals, but you also hate the Spurs…the epitomy of D and fundamentals.

    You love baseball and football, but hate basketball for all the free agent movement. Except for the fact that there’s far more player movement in baseball and football than in bball. This Lakers team has been almost exactly the same for the past three years. Same goes for the Celts. Baseball? Teams completely change from year to year. Football? Who’s the Colts’ starting RB this year? Who knows?

    You just come off as a hateful guy.

    I have a suggestion for you if you hate the NBA so much…DON’T WATCH!

    By the way, do you think one guy means more to an NBA team or a NASCAR team? What would happen if Jimmie Johnson switched teams? Would that team be an instant contender? Hmmm.

    What a waste of my time. At least I now know to never come back to this pitiful site. Thank you for that.

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