NBA basketball has greatly evolved since the league's inception, though many of the underlying principles behind winning games have remained unchanged. That consistency has allowed the media to rely on clichés to tell the story of different players and teams.
Many clichés are used to describe the mental and physical attributes of a team, such as talent level, age, experience and the personality of its players. Some expressions are used to explain a team's style of play, while others refer to the history of a team or the city it calls home.
Certain clichés address aspects of the game, like defense or rebounding. There are also those that touch on deeper philosophical ideas, such as "staying in the moment."
Regardless of the subject, clichés enable the media, fans and players to understand teams within a greater context, whether it be the history of the game, society as a whole or human nature.