Whilst the NBA is in the midst of what could be a prolonged and plaguing lockout, the NFL has emerged from it’s with such success that no one can even remember the 132 football-less days.
Last night’s Packers vs Saints season opener was the perfect way to open the season. Not so much if you enjoy low scoring, defensive grinds but both teams put on a spectacle that came down to the very last play of the game.
I have no idea why they tried to ram it in with a rookie with 11 Packers in the box and Drew Brees on fire but this is not a Saints nor a football blog, so we’ll move on.
Nnamdi Asomugha, former Raiders corner, was the most highly sought after free agent in the 2011 class. To put it in more recognisable terms for NBA fans, it was the summer of Nnamdi. He didn’t get his own hour long ESPN special but he still made serious shockwaves when he made his decision.
The reason I cite Asomugha as the perfect personification for why the NFL trumps the NBA is pretty simple.
There is a growing trend in the NBA, which has mostly come internally, where the best players in the league are attempting to play in the bigger markets where they can earn more money in sponsorships. Playing in New Orleans compared to playing in New York is obviously no comparison, and players are now taking it upon themselves to stick it back to the owners using their own phrasing.
‘It’s all about business’.
Whether you like it or not, loyalty is dead in the NBA. Sure there are a few lasting examples such as Tim Duncan, Dirk Nowitzki and Steve Nash amongst very few others, but whether it is truly an expression of rebellion against the owners and the league or whether they are as shallow as they come across, NBA players and their decision making has drastically changed forever as we know it.
The NFL on the other hand is thriving. It is America’s game and the ideals in which the country prides itself upon are reflected directly in this and only this code of sport.
Nnamdi Asomugha is a walking example of the difference between the NBA and the NFL.
Let’s pretend Asomugha was an NBA player and the same teams were fighting for his services. The three teams most likely to sign Asomugha were New York, Dallas and Philadelphia.
If I need determine which are the greater markets and greater opportunities for self selling then you probably shouldn’t have read this much of the article.
People will make the case that NBA players move to these bigger markets to put themselves in a better position to win, which is nothing but a hollow cover up designed to revert attention away from their selfishness.
I promise you had Wade been playing for the Timberwolves and he asked Bosh and James to make a big three in Minnesota he would have been laughed out of the building.
Asomugha is what the NBA players wished they were but will forever fail to be.
You might say just because the NBA players are greedier and greater prima donnas doesn’t mean the game is any worse than the NFL. Perhaps the word ‘better’ doesn’t quite fit, but certainly I know which situation I’d rather be in if I were a commissioner of the two codes.
The NBA has become increasingly hollow, segregated and predictable. The regular season is a painfully drawn out cash grab, and the league refuses to cut games because it doesn’t want to lose money. The standard drops and nearly every year you can predict who will be in the Conference Finals. Lakers and Celtics fans don’t even watch the regular season because they know they’re guaranteed playoffs every season.
The NFL is the opposite of all the characteristics I have just mentioned and much more.
Do not say I am just an NBA hater nor a football tragic. This is an NBA blog. I have watched the NBA twice as long and ten times more closely than the NFL.
Up until now.
The flaws of the NBA have shone through and it seems nothing is being done to stop it. Sure the negotiations will attempt to stop all the best players moving to the big markets and creating super teams, but in the end it seems the power has shifted to the players and that is a very dangerous environment.
There is no way the new deal will have fixed even half the issues that plague the NBA. The game has manifested into something no one thought possible and no one wanted to see.
The league and it’s players would do well to learn from the NFL’s example.