Friday, March 28, 2014
2013-2014 Will Be Remembered As Bad NBA Season
Well, Adam Silver took over for David Stern. That is huge. Whomever wins the championship will have it be memorable. Maybe it is the Heat's three-peat season? Maybe the Pacers first ring? Oklahoma City's first title. Maybe the Spurs win their 5th title?
And there you have it. Silver and the fact that we really, really, really are just been in a holding pattern for the Conference Championship weeks. We all are waiting for late May/early June when we get to see the Heat-Pacers in the Eastern Conference Finals and the Spurs-Thunder in the West. Whatever combo makes the Finals will have their own storyline.
Aside of that, what we've watched this year has been horrible basketball. Bad matchups all over the place. Injuries. Rumors of tanking.
This is the season the Lakers and Celtics both missed the playoffs. Not just missed the playoffs, but as of March 28th won just 47 games ... combined!!! Hey, 1980s! The Lakers, Celtics, Pistons and Sixers will not be part of the playoffs.
A year where the Philadelphia 76ers just tied the NBA record for longest losing streak at 26 games. They will probably break that tomorrow night against the also awful Detroit Pistons. Yet, despite losing 26 straight games, the Milwaukee Bucks still have a worse record that them.
Not only are the bad teams bad, but they're making it seem like other bad teams are good. The Charlotte Bobcats went 7-59 just two years ago. That was the worst record in NBA history. History. History!!!! The only significant moves they've made since then was drafting a mediocre Michael Kidd-Gilchrist in 2012 and signing Al Jefferson in 2013 and they are now sitting as the 7th seed in the East standings. Heck, they are just three games back of being the 5th seed!
This is the year that Russell Westbrook and Dwyane Wade have both missed significant time for the Thunder and Heat, respectively, yet their teams are still sitting as the No. 2 seed in their respective conferences.
Derrick Rose has pretty much missed this entire season. The season of injury. The season where Kobe Bryant played all of six games. And none of those six were any good.
The Lakers. The Lakers have had guys like Kobe Bryant, Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabar, James Worthy and Shaquille O'Neal suit up for them over the last 25 years. Last night against the lowly Bucks (which the Lakers lost), they sent out a starting lineup of Kendall Marshall, Jodie Meeks, Jordan Hill, Wesley Johnson and Chris Kaman.
The funny thing is that we have been promised two things that may not happen for all these sad sack losers. The upcoming NBA Draft and the upcoming free agent frenzy. Both will happen, but neither may be as great as we've been led to believe.
If you have paid attention to the NCAA Tournament, you have seen some of these can't-miss studs turn in some horrible games. Andrew Wiggins, who six months ago was the greatest thing since LeBron James, scored a robust 4 points against Stanford in a Round of 32 loss. Wiggins' teammate Joel Embiid, who is likely a top three pick, didn't even play in the Big Dance due to a back injury. Jabari Parker's Duke squad were dismissed in their first game to ... Mercer? Kentucky's "greatest recruiting class in history" still has them alive, but they also earned a paltry No. 8 seed. These guys may turn into nice or even great players. But they may not be the franchise saving class like the 1984, 1996 or 2003 classes were.
And that free agent class this summer? It also could be a bust. Many people believe most of the biggest names will stay put when all is said and done. The Big Three in Miami may just stick around for a few more years. Dirk Nowitzki isn't leaving Dallas. Tim Duncan isn't leaving San Antonio. The Suns can match whatever anyone offers Eric Bledsoe. Same goes for the Pistons and Greg Monroe.
Carmelo Anthony could leave New York. But only one team can get his services. The teams that lose out will have to fight for scraps. You may end up just picking among guys like Gordon Hayward, Luol Deng, Lance Stephenson and Zach Randolph.
This season has just been bad all the way around. Bad teams playing bad basketball. Sure, we will get a nice Clippers dunk or another huge scoring night from Kevin Durant. We also got a bored Heat team sloshing through the regular season. Who cares? They, like the rest of us, are waiting until June. Again, those conference finals should be really, really good and the following draft and free agency period will be lively.
But it may not be worth it. Not to sit and watch a game this season.