Comparing Every NBA Team to a TV Show

Jesse DorseyFeatured ColumnistJanuary 11, 2012

Comparing Every NBA Team to a TV Show

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    In this day and age, the lines between various forms of entertainment are as blurred as ever, as you can go and read a column about the NBA and end up hearing comparisons between players and bands, movies or even television shows.

    We live in a society where everyone is taking in endless hours of media every day and where access to new shows is virtually unlimited.

    Not only has this created a lot of bad television shows out there in an attempt to just get people watching, it's created a lot of good television shows, as networks are realizing they can compete for the top-tier of TV watchers with great shows.

    So, which team in the league is a good television show and which is just another time filler or show that's overstayed its welcome? Click onward to find out.

Atlanta Hawks: Entourage

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    There once was a time wen Entourage was one of the best shows on television. It was a unique look at the film industry focusing on Vincent Chase and all of his bros around him. It was funny, told good stories and visually appealing. Now, it's played out and needs to be put down.

    Pretty much the exact same thing goes for the Atlanta Hawks. Joe Johnson once led one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference, but now the team just seems like a mish-mash of players which will be bounced in the first round of the playoffs. They're better off rebuilding now.

Boston Celtics: House

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    Forgive me for the pun, but both this show and this team seem to be on their last legs.

    The now-formulaic House has been on for so long that it's nearly unrecognizable at this point, as they have shuffled characters around and gotten rid of some here and there.

    Just like the aging Celtics who seem to play a very predictable form of basketball lately while trying to shake things up by introducing some of their new players into the game, this could be the swan song for both parties.

Charlotte Bobcats: The Simpsons

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    To me, the entire run of the Charlotte Bobcats while they have been a part of the NBA has pretty much mirrored that of The Simpsons in that time frame.

    If The Simpsons would have ended back in 2003, people would have watched it and celebrated it for what would have been 14 entertaining seasons. Seasons 15 through 25 have been Charlotte Bobcats' seasons.

    They have had some funny episodes in that time frame, but at this point they're just coasting until somebody tells them to stop making shows.

Chicago Bulls: Boardwalk Empire

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    There are so many storylines going on in Chicago with the Bulls right now that it's starting to look like an episode of Boardwalk Empire. 

    There's constantly a debate over Derrick Rose and his MVP credentials, just like people debating over whether Steve Buscemi as Nucky Thompson is the choice for Best Actor. Then there's the integration of Rip Hamilton, the Carlos Boozer blocking Taj Gibson angle, Joakim Noah's development, Luol Deng's continued role as one of the most underrated players in the league and their inevitable path back to the Eastern Conference Finals.

    There's a lot going on here, but it's fun to watch just to see how everything's going to play out.

Cleveland Cavaliers: The Cleveland Show

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    Probably the worst offshoot that Seth MacFarlane has tried to pass off as a new show, The Cleveland Show just doesn't have the same original feel as Family Guy or even the interesting characters and plots of American Dad!

    There are some interesting characters on the show that make it interesting to watch from time-to-time, but altogether it's just Fox trying to jam their night with whatever MacFarlane decides to make.

Dallas Mavericks: The Walking Dead

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    Right now, Dallas is the oldest team in the NBA based on both average age and weighted for who plays the most minutes, so it's pretty easy to compare these guys to walking corpses.

    Beyond that, they have an undisputed leader in Dirk Nowitzki who seems to rise and fall in production with the team along with a plethora of offshoots who all have interesting story arcs to follow along with.

Denver Nuggets: 30 Rock

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    30 Rock is a show where there's always something going on and always a mix of personalities who can take over the show at any given time.

    I guess in this case, Liz Lemon would be Nene, as she kind of holds the whole thing together, Jack Donaghy would be the two-headed monster they have at point guard and the rest of the team would act as the rest of the cast, who can really get hot on any given night.

    People talk about the Nuggets being nine or 10 players deep. Well, 30 Rock is the same way.

Detroit Pistons: The Office

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    It hurts to say it because it's been one of the best shows of the past decade, but The Office has far outstayed its welcome.

    This past season was one I watched on and off, but when I did it just seemed forced and over-the-top for the sake of being over the top.

    This is kind of the feeling that I get when I watch Detroit. They aren't a terrible team, but it would probably be much better for them in the long run if they let go of the past and start to rebuild.

Golden State Warriors: Portlandia

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    There is a lot to like about the Golden State Warriors and then there is some to dislike. That's about the way I feel about IFC's Portlandia.

    It's a very fast-paced program (kind of like the Warriors' offense) where no scene lasts more than a few minutes, so if you don't like one specific skit, the next one that follows is sure to give you something new to giggle about.

    If you guys out there haven't seen Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein's humorous take on the lovably strange city, I suggest you check it out. The first season is up on Netflix. 

Houston Rockets: Mythbusters

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    On the base level, this is a good team. They have a good scorer and a great mentality with Luis Scola turning them into a hustling, bustling bunch of ballers. However, there does seem to be something missing after the past few years of these guys being together.

    As seems to be the case with Mythbusters, the Rockets have gotten a bit stale, and a shakeup is needed to keep the team going strong.

    Maybe that trade that never happened for Pau Gasol could have done it, but we'll never know at this point, just like we'll never know if Bill Nye the Science Guy would help better Mythbusters.

Indiana Pacers: Game of Thrones

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    This comparison is based on the many, many different directions that it seems both this show and this team could take.

    Initially it looked like both Game of Thrones and the Indiana Pacers would be terrific, and so far Indiana has been pretty good, just like the first few episodes of Game of Thrones.

    However, after the finale of the first season, it seems like this show could continue to be good, turn into an over-the-top fantasy show or get even better all depending on how they use their new plot developments in the show.

    That's a bit how I feel about Indiana. They haven only beaten one good team so far (Boston), so it's hard to get a handle on just how good they are.

Los Angeles Clippers: Modern Family

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    I haven't gotten around to watching much Modern Family but what I've seen I've enjoyed and from what I've heard it's even better than that.

    The show reminds me of the Clippers in a way that it seems to be a pretty happy-go-lucky show with some interesting depth to it in terms of topics of stories and characters.

    It's a simple, yet complex show just like the Clippers are a simple and complex team simultaneously.

Los Angeles Lakers: Dr. Who

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    I've never been into Doctor Who much in the way that the dedicated fans have been into it, but from what I've seen it's been a very interesting long-running series.

    The reason I draw comparison between the two is because the show surrounds a doctor who travels through space and time, but the show has run for so long that they've had nearly a dozen Doctors.

    Kobe Bryant is the current Doctor who has more games played than games left at this point, and as of right now there's no telling who will be their next Doctor. Throughout their history, people will argue who was the best leader of the Lakers (Elgin, Wilt, Kareem, Magic, Shaq, Kobe) just like people will argue over who was the best Doctor.

Memphis Grizzlies: Louie

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    Louis C.K.'s drop-dead hilarious comedy that showcases himself as the main character is a show that anyone can get into.

    Like the Grizzlies, terrible things continually happen to Louie, but at the end of the day it makes him a better person, just like it makes the Grizzlies a better team.

    It's a non-traditionally produced television show, as C.K. pretty much does everything, from shooting to acting to editing and producing the show on his own, just as the Grizzlies are a unique team cobbled together from tough-nosed outcasts and interesting personalities.

Miami Heat: Mad Men

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    The Miami Heat are one of the best teams in the NBA, just as Mad Men is one of the best dramas on television, although Mad Men is far less of a polarizing show.

    The well-dressed Dwyane Wade leads the team just as a well-dressed Jon Hamm cavorts about as the well-dressed Don Draper as many interesting and talented actors and actresses create one of the most interesting shows on television.

    So if Wade is Don Draper, would that mean LeBron or Bosh is Sterling?

Milwaukee Bucks: The Leauge

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    The League is a smart, entertaining blue-collar comedy that has been a good show to holdover people watching It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia on FX. It tends to remind me of the Milwaukee Bucks.

    There's an obvious center of the show with Mark like the team has Andrew Bogut. However, it doesn't focus on him as if he's the "main character" as all the other guys tend to get just as much screen time. This is kind of like the Bucks—their work as a team form one of the best defenses in the NBA. 

Minnesota Timberwolves: How I Met Your Mother

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    This comparison makes me laugh a bit because it forces me to look at Kevin Love as Barney Stinson, but I think realistically, Ricky Rubio would be Barney in this situation.

    Love, the obvious leader of this team, would have to be Josh as Rubio would be Barney based on how he has quickly and obviously become the main attraction of this team, making them all the more interesting over the past few weeks. Without him, the team wouldn't be nearly as interesting.

New Jersey Nets: Glee

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    Sorry for the comparison Nets fans, but the attention surrounding the Nets as well as the show Glee continue to baffle me.

    The only thing that has ever made me want to even flip the channel over to watch this show has been the allure of Jane Lynch, although she's not even enough to get me to check it out, kind of like Deron Williams with the Nets.

    They don't have a team that's poised to do much this season, just as Glee isn't a very entertaining attempt at a television show, but people continue to talk about both as if they're going places. If they end up nabbing Dwight Howard I may end up reevaluating my decision, but for right now, they're as unwatchable as a bunch of teenagers singing "Under Pressure."

New Orleans Hornets: Two and a Half Men

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    Now that Charlie Sheen has left Two and a Half Men, there's no telling that the show is not something that I would call "watchable."

    In return they got an interesting and entertaining actor, but not somebody who can come in and fill the shoes of Sheen, who gained a following in his eight seasons as Charlie Harper. Pretty much the same goes for Eric Gordon and the Hornets.

    The interesting thing is that both the show and the team lost their best person amid some form of controversy or another, leading to a hasty decision to replace him and just sour feelings all around.

New York Knicks: Eastbound and Down

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    The New York Knicks are always talked about like they should be and deserve to be a good team because it would be good for the whole league.

    It's talk like that that makes me see that entire team as Kenny Powers, the egotistical, self-indulged former professional baseball player looking to break back into the MLB.

    With the future looking like Kenny may end up back in the majors (and the Knicks being a championship contender) I can't decide whether it would be more entertaining if he eventually does get back to the MLB or if he continues to struggle and everything falls apart, leading to him eventually going back to being a gym teacher.

Oklahoma City Thunder: Breaking Bad

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    This show has everything, just as the Oklahoma City Thunder do.

    They are an original team with plenty of excitement to exhibit and even a bit of a real-life feud going down.

    Of course, in this situation Kevin Durant would be Walter White and Russell Westbrook would be Jesse Pinkman, as he's been both a great sidekick, a terrific foil to Walter and the potential downfall of the two all at the same time.

    It's just a matter of time before we figure out who their Gus Fring will be for the season. 

Orlando Magic: The Bachelor

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    This past handful of months has been nothing but the Orlando Magic trying to woo Dwight Howard into picking them in free agency after the season ends.

    However, at the same time there are constantly leaks from other teams with what they would be willing to do to trade for Dwight, leading to more suitors appearing.

    I can only hope that Howard decides to do a television special like LeBron, instead opting to narrow each GM down one by one and handing out Superman capes to the teams that haven't been eliminated.

Philadelphia 76ers: Archer

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    Here we have a pretty simple television show with a lot going for it, even though it is so simple. It's an animated series on FX that revolves around a company of secret agents getting into trouble and saving the world.

    Sterling Archer is a great parody of Andre Iguodala, as the Sixers brass seem to have always wanted something better as their go-to guy (they've only put him on the trading block 483 times over the past three seasons), but really he's the best thing for this team.

    He's a central character that everyone works well with and he helps keep things interesting, just like Archer. Although, I don't think that Iggy is as big of a block head as Archer.

Phoenix Suns: Dexter

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    I've enjoyed Dexter over the years, but not as much as some of the die-hard fans of the show, but it's mostly because I think Michael C. Hall holds the show together more than he should have to.

    It seems to me that his supporting cast has been a bunch of sub-par actors and actresses for the most part (I can't stand Jennifer Carpenter as his sister). With better actors, the show could be even better than it is, which is saying something. 

Portland Trail Blazers: Justified

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    Here we have a basketball team and a television show that's getting a lot more credit as the games and shows roll along, but even more could be deserved.

    The old-school style of Timothy Olyphant as Raylan Givens is obviously the best part of the show, although he has yet to get the credit he deserves, much like Lamarcus Aldridge. Olyphant is easily one of the most underrated television actors as LA is one of the most underrated basketball players in the game.

Sacramento Kings: It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

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    This random, yet fitting formation of a basketball team never fails to leave me entertained.

    It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia is not your classic version of a comedy program to take in, as they have plots continually revolving around getting addicted to crack, flipping gasoline for profit or just accidentally ruining someone's life while not even realizing it. It's not exactly Lucy burning dinner when Ricky's boss has come for dinner.

    Anyway, this dysfunctional group of people always seems to be getting into trouble and never getting ahead even with all of their schemes, just as the Kings group of rag-tag misfits can't seem to start winning games.

San Antonio Spurs: CSI

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    For years and years CSI has been a staple of CBS, whether the offshoot be in Las Vegas, Miami, New York, New Brunswick, Portland or Siberia. It just seems like people have watched that show for decades.

    Now, however, it seems like the run is over. People don't seem to care as much about figuring out why some guy's blood is at a murder scene even though he was seen somewhere else 20 miles away at the time.

    There were plenty of good episodes of CSI in the past, but at this point they're getting old and tired, and just kind of slogging along.

    But who knows, maybe we're all wrong about the Spurs, maybe they've got a season or two left in the tank.

Toronto Raptors: The Big Bang Theory

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    Here we have a group of unique basketball players that at times resemble a good basketball team.

    The Big Bang Theory is a group of unique actors who at time resemble funny.


    The show revolves around an unbelievable idea that a woman who works as an actress/waitress could live in the same apartment complex as a bunch of physicists and professors (seriously, I've never been able to get past this issue on the show).

    Meanwhile, the Raptors masquerade as a team of basketball players who have a center that should be a power forward and a point guard who doesn't know the word "guard" is even in the name of his position. 

Utah Jazz: Saturday Night Live

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    For the better part of three decades, the Utah Jazz have been a relevant team in the NBA, at the very least making the playoffs or at least fighting for a spot. They've made the playoffs in 24 of the past 29 years.

    Now, however, there's not much you can say about the Jazz. They've got some young players that are interesting, but something is going to need to be reworked in there.

    Saturday Night Live has followed a similar path, as it was great for decades, had a bit of a dip in the late 90s and then was pretty good again for the early part of the 2000s, through about 2005 or so. At this point, however, there's not much reason to go out of your way to check it out.

Washington Wizards: Work It

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    The world tells me that this new show Work It is almost as big of a steaming pile of garbage as the Washington Wizards.

    The Wizards have finally won a game, but the grass doesn't get any greener as the season goes along, just as I'm sure this Work It show won't turn into Cheers anytime soon.

    Seriously, this show is about two guys who dress up like women to get a job because they've been discriminated against for being men during the recession. Seriously, who greenlight's this garbage?


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