Five things that suck about the NBA

I'd like to preface this article by stating that right now the NBA is the most entertaining it's been in years. There are several plausible championship contenders, many formerly obscure teams on the rise, and the overall quality of play hasn't been this high since the end of the Jordan era. Oh yeah, and it also makes College Basketball look like shit. Nevertheless, there are five things in the NBA that suck by all objective standards:

1. Long two point shot attempts

Long two pointers are the most worthless shots in basketball. Why can't the dumbasses in the NBA figure out that taking half a step backwards gets an extra point? All shots in between the College and NBA three point lines should be banned:

Better yet, shooting from within that zone should be considered a technical foul. That way the shot doesn't count, the other team can get points, and making the same mistake twice (or punching the referee) results in ejection from the game.

Excluding a few strategic cases (i.e. being down by 1 point with 2 seconds left in the game), the chances of making a two pointer would have to be 50% higher than the chances of making a three pointer for it to be worth taking. (Prove it yourself, it's not that hard.) Nobody in the NBA sucks so much that moving from 24 to 23 feet away from the basket makes him 50% more likely to make a shot. I wouldn't be surprised if that actually lowered the field goal percentage. Players train specifically to shoot from three point line, whereas nobody practices long two pointers because they're shitty and pointless.

2. Bullshit commentary

Commentary in the NBA is as uninsightful as my balls are gigantic. Some of the things that these guys say are dumb enough to make John Madden look like a nuclear engineer. I was watching the fourth quarter of a game earlier this year, when out of nowhere the commentator decided to ignore the game and give a five minute lecture on the 200th anniversary of Beethoven's third symphony. Shortly afterwards, I visited the studio and punched him in the teeth. Next year he can celebrate the 1st anniversary of getting his ass kicked.

When they're not talking about random crap, they illogically hype a game as much as they can. A team that just won can keep winning because of momentum, but a team that just lost can also win because it has the perfect opportunity to bounce back. No matter what the score is or how the game is being played, the announcers always pretend that both teams still have an equal chance to win.

It's not just the analysts who fail to tell it as it is. The players go along with this bullshit by pretending that any game can be won with effort, sunshine, and rainbows. If they try to say something intelligent, it looks like they're finger pointing or giving away the team's strategy.

Not sure if a player is bullshitting? Here are a few phrases that'll give it away:

  • "Bring more energy out of the locker room"
  • "Stay out of foul trouble"
  • "Find the open man"
  • "Play smart basketball"
  • "Keep the game at our pace"
  • "Take high percentage shots"
  • "Cut down on turnovers"
  • "Play aggressively"
  • "Get to the basket"
  • "Have fun"

3. Too many cheap fouls

Basketball, or Indian dancing?

An offensive player runs into a defender, pretends to be off balance, jumps back, chucks the ball, waves his hands hysterically, and purposely falls. The shot is way off, but that doesn't matter, because the referee fell for his shitty acting and called a foul on the defender. This is known as "drawing the foul", and it's poison to professional basketball. The only reason why players try to draw fouls is because they're too pussy to earn their points.

The only kind of foul more annoying than the pansy acting foul is the late game intentional foul. Everybody hates this. It's disgraceful, it slows down the game, and IT NEVER WORKS. Suck it up and lose the game with some dignity.

The following foul rules would undoubtedly make watching basketball less painful:

1. Ejection with 2 technical fouls or 5 personal fouls
2. Intentional fouls are technical fouls
3. Intentionally trying to draw a foul is a technical foul
4. Shooting fouls result in the foulee checking the ball out with a new shot clock

4. Liberal camera angles

I've been seeing a lot of avant garde camerawork used to shoot live game play, and it's nothing short of horrendous. Here's a crappy sketch of the only camera angle that should ever be used:

This angle catches everything you'd need to see during half court play: the ball, every player (except the occassional fatass who hasn't made it downcourt yet), the basket, and the boundary lines. Most importantly, the camera never has to move. One time I was watching basketball with a kid who couldn't adjust to the constantly moving camera. His eyes were so stressed from jerking back and forth that he had a seizure. I thought that he was just acting up, so I beat him and locked him in the basement until the game was over.

5. Larry Brown

When Larry Brown was hired to be the savior of the New York Knicks, my bullshit detector hit levels unseen since the 2004 NFL draft debacle of Eli Manning. It takes an unparalleled brand of incompetence to lead the the team with the highest payroll in the NBA to the second worst record in the league, not the mention the worst record in team history, but the records don't end there. He set an NBA record for starting an unprecedented 42 different lineups throughout the season. Why can't I get paid the highest salary of any coach in NBA history to determine my team's lineup through trial and error? Then when he's exposed as a miserable failure, he tries to shift the blame to his players. Some words of advice for the Knicks: tar and feather this bitch out of town.

Sure, the record books might lead you to believe that he's a good coach, but that's only because he's a manipulative bastard who knows how to quit while he's ahead. He has the uncanny ability to follow the scent of money from city to city, leaving his previous teams in turmoil until they realize that they're actually much better off without him. Last year while he was struggling to coach the Detroit Pistons through the playoffs, he was exposed for simultaneously negotiating to become the next president of the Cleveland Cavaliers. Around that time, Cleveland realized that Larry Brown is an arrogant prick and decided not to hire him. Brown left Detroit to coach the Knicks, and the following season, Detroit had the best record in the NBA.

Presumably because every other coach had a stroke, Larry Brown was bestowed the honor of coaching 2004 Olympic basketball team. For those of you who can't guess how that turned out, let's just say that we were blown out by Puerto Rico, a tiny Carribbean island commonwealth that we own. Understandably, it was also the year the the US Olympic basketball team ceased to be called The Dream Team. That's one hell of a legacy for any coach, but Larry Brown isn't just any coach -- He's unquestionably the worst coach in NBA history.

Need a good coach for 2008 Olympics? Look no further than the two who made it to the NBA finals this year: Pat Riley and Avery Johnson.

Pat Riley: Just take one good look at this man's slick hairstyle. You know he means business. Riley commands respect, wins championships, and when he coached the Knicks they were actually good.

Avery Johnson: A humble man who's been through the ups and downs of the modern NBA, Avery Johnson's experience as a player and outstanding leadership make him the sort of coach who everybody wants to play for. In just his first full season as a head coach, he won the NBA Coach of the Year award.

UPDATE: I just found an article making similar criticisms for the NFL. Check out #5.

10803 million dollars were wasted on Larry Brown