Was the shortened NBA season a bad idea?

Posted: February 7, 2012 in Uncategorized
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In the midst of the NBA lockout, many team owners, players and fans pushed to save the season, even if it was shortened. When the NBA decided to open a shortened 66 game season on Christmas Day, America rejoiced at the return of basketball. Flash forward to February and this NBA season is like no other previous season. There are too many games in a short period of time and injuries are piling up quickly with no time to recover.

The shortened preseason and training camps are mostly to blame, but is NBA Commissioner, David Stern, to blame too? He was more concerned with making money than the well being of the NBA players. Every night, you hear of multiple players on their respective teams’ injured list. Is it because of fatigue or laziness during the off season, or a combination of both? Should the NBA have just cancelled the 2011-2012 season instead of having a condensed schedule?

Big name players such as Derrick Rose, Carmelo Anthony, Manu Ginobli, Chris Paul, Dirk Nowitzki, Jason Kidd, Paul Pierce, Dwyane Wade, Stephen Curry and Chauncey Billups have all suffered uncommon injuries that can be traced back to being unprepared for this rigorous season. Injuries such as pulled muscles, broken hands, turf toe, Achilles tear, back spasms and twisted ankles are injuries you rarely see in a typical NBA season.

Playing back-to-back-to-back games with one or two days rest before another stretch of games is taking a toll on player’s bodies, regardless of age. JJ Barea, one of the younger players in the NBA, has already missed 15 games this season with a hamstring and ankle injuries. Dirk Nowitzki, a veteran, sat out for a week for extra conditioning and rehab. Jason Kidd followed him after suffering back and calf injuries.

It’s quickly become a strange NBA season. One thing the NBA Commissioner strived for in the new deal was parity. Well, this season is a great example of what they wanted, but probably not the way they wanted to go about it. One night San Antonio will beat the Boston Celtics and then lose to the Toronto Raptors the next night. Instances like this are a nightly occurrence because of the condensed schedule, injuries and resting of key players. Many fans will be disappointed when their favorite player isn’t playing because he’s resting for the upcoming stretch of games. I, personally, went through this two weeks ago when I purchased tickets to two Mavericks games. The tickets I purchased happened to fall in the time period when Dirk was rehabbing. I definitely wasn’t a happy camper, and I’m sure many fans felt the same.

So, was this shortened season a bad idea? Should the NBA have cancelled the season instead of “saving” it? Many of these injuries and rigorous stretch of games are tiring out players quicker than usual and wrecking havoc on their bodies. Some player’s averages are lower than normal because of the fatigue. Many veterans are essentially wasting away a year of their career because they can’t recuperate quick enough.

I love basketball, but I feel like the NBA should have cancelled the season. During the lockout, I was one of the fans who pushed to save the season, but now I’m rethinking myself. The first third of the season has been full of terrible ball all across the board. I’m ashamed to admit I have lost some of my passion for basketball because of it. It makes me sick to see such terrible injuries on ESPN SportsCenter every night.

But, at the same time, I don’t feel bad for all of the players. These guys could have kept themselves in shape during the offseason. Many assumed there would be no NBA season so they became lazy and didn’t hit the gym until two weeks prior to the season. They are being paid millions of dollars to play a game they love, so why couldn’t they keep themselves in shape during the offseason? Example: Dirk Nowitzki. I love the dude and he’s my favorite Maverick, but it was really hard for me to have sympathy for him while he was missing games for conditioning. Sure, go party after winning your first championship, but start working out in August/September. He admitted he didn’t want to play basketball anymore after winning the title and playing for the German national team. No fire. No desire to get into the gym. So that explains why he’s out of shape, slow and can’t shoot right now. I still love the guy, but come on, get with it! By not being in shape, Dirk, and other veterans like him, are throwing away one good year in their career.

2012 NBA season=miserable to watch for many reasons. The NBA should have cancelled the season in order to save these players from awful injuries, exhaustion, frustration and bad ball. 66 games in four months is NOT a great idea!

  1. i agree, today derrick rose is out for the season with a torn acl, same day the knicks lost iman shumpert same injury. 50 games would have been enough with less back to back games.
    i mean the nba normally plays 82 games, they played 66 only 16 less games with no preseason for conditioning and 2 1/2 months of time less than they normally would have. terrible.

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