NBA Playoffs 2012: Greed Ruined a Potentially Great Season and More
David Stern recently had the nerve to say that the compressed schedule created by a lockout initiated by him and his owners was not the cause of the incredible number of injuries we've seen this year.
Well then let me ask you something Mr. Stern, what did cause all of these injuries? Because last I checked, we don't usually see anywhere near this many injuries in a normal season.
Is Derrick Rose going to have his explosive first step when he prematurely comes back in eight months? Nope, he's probably going to hurt himself again because a torn ACL is a two-year injury. Look at Carson Palmer's injury that ruined his career.
Derrick Rose isn't Chris Paul. He's not going to be able to simply slide into the cerebral pure point guard role CP3 has mastered. In all likelihood, we will never see the old Derrick Rose again.
Iman Shumpert and Ricky Rubio have both seen really promising careers put on hold due to major knee injuries. Is Shumpert ever going to get his defensive range and quickness back? Probably not.
Rubio is smart enough to maintain a high level of play without athleticism, but what's going to happen to the awesome chemistry he developed with Kevin Love this year? It's going to take a lot of time to rebuild that.
The Clippers lost their emotional leader (Chauncey Billups) early on, the Celtics are currently without Ray Allen and Memphis didn't have Zach Randolph for much of the season.
This season has reached the point where we'll never know who the best team was. The champion will be whoever stayed the healthiest. It's a war of attrition. It's a shame, but historically we're going to have to slap a big fat asterisk next time the name of whoever wins because we'll never know what would have happened in a normal 82-game schedule.
It's such a shame too because the NBA had something so special coming into this year. You could argue that the league didn't have this much momentum since Michael Jordan's retirement.
There was a new MVP (Rose), a first-time champion poised to defend its title (Dallas) and the rise of the evil empire in Miami. That's not even factoring in all of the young stars making their ascent (Kevin Durant, Kevin Love, Rajon Rondo, etc.) or the veterans ready for one last shot at glory (like the Spurs and Celtics).
But all of that is gone.
Do we get to see a Miami-Chicago rematch? Nope. One of the most highly anticipated playoff series of all time is now lost because of David Stern's refusal to let a couple of dollars slip out of his fingers.
The NBA's blatant disregard for the quality of play and safety of their players stretches beyond the regular season. Reports have come out that there will be back-to-backs in the playoffs. As far as I can remember this has never happened.
So thank you commissioner, you've ruined a great season because you can't let go of a couple of bucks. We weren't asking for much. You couldn't have made the season 60 games instead of 66 just so teams wouldn't have had to play three nights in a row? Would that have been so hard?
The league owes an apology to it's fans because we're the ones who suffer. We're the ones paying our hard-earned money to allow the league to operate, and how do they repay us? They give us a bad product and refuse to accept responsibility.
How do you think the millions of Bulls fans out there feel right now? They've lost not only a chance at a championship, but potentially the career of their MVP.
What about Timberwolves fans? They haven't had something to get excited about since Kevin Garnett left, and just as Ricky Rubio begins to give them hope, he goes down.
You're on a roll commissioner, you've not only managed to alienate several of your best fanbases, but you've also killed their championship hopes for the foreseeable future.
I hope you're happy with the money you've made because you essentially took it directly out of the pockets of some of your players. Chauncey Billups will probably never make more than the veteran's minimum again, and considering the ankle surgery Ray Allen has to have after the season, you've probably cut his next contract in half.
And they're the lucky ones. Iman Shumpert and Ricky Rubio may have lost tens of millions of dollars over the course of their careers. Players make the bulk of their career earnings on their second contracts. If they can't heal, they may never see it.
So I hope you're happy Mr. Stern. Not only have you butchered your product (and hopefully your own legacy), but you refuse to even take responsibility when it's so blatantly obvious that it is your fault. Enjoy your money commissioner, you make me sick.
—Signed, a disgruntled fan.
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