How can the NBA be fix you may ask? Currently the game is in really good place. Its popularity is still growing and people still enjoy the product. In my opinion the way to fix the NBA is to let the players play basketball. No more policing everything little thing they do. Stop telling them what to wear, what to eat and how to act. Just let them be themselves and ease up on the players. Just let them play.
Ever since the inception of the NBA they have been two teams that have dominated the league, the Boston Celtics and the Los Angeles Lakers. Since 1950 a total of 63 NBA finals series have been held. The Celtic/Lakers rivalry has made up a total of 33 champions. The two most celebrated teams have enjoyed major success over the years. This has resulted in 12 meeting between the two. The bad blood has grown over the year and this rivalry has evolved into the biggest rivalry in modern day sport.
In the early days of the NBA, two players dominated, Wilt Chamberlain and Bill Russell. Each played on a different coast. While Wilt was arguably the better player, essentially breaking every record in the NBA, Bill’s team, the Celtics won 11 championships during his 13 year career. In comparison the Lakers only managed to win one during that period, and were never able to defeat the Celtics.
Wilt and Bill
After both clubs were quite during the 70’s, the 80’s proved to be very eventful for both teams. In 1979 the Celtics Drafted Larry Bird while Lakers drafted Magic Johnson in 1980. This led the NBA to once again be dominated by the two most celebrated clubs in its short history. During this period the Lakers were champions 5 times while the Celtics were 3 times. In 1985 and 1987 the Lakers were finally able to defeat the Celtics in the NBA Finals.
Magic and Larry
The 80’s rekindled the rivalry and reignited the bad blood between the two cities. The 90’s were a different story. Both teams had a very lacklustre lineup and were dominated by opponents (namely Michael Jordan.) In the early 2000’s the Lakers acquired superstar centre Shaquille O’Neal and high school phenomenon Kobe Bryant. The Lakers demolished opponents during this period and were able to three peat (2000-2002) and closed the gap between them and the Celtics.
The rivalry was reignited after the Celtics were able to form a super team in 2008, after acquiring perennial All Stars Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen. Lakers also made some moves and were able to acquire Pau Gasol to complement Kobe Bryant. The two teams faced off in 2008 and resulted in a Celtic victory. Two years later they met again in the 2010 finals. One of the greatest finals series, it went all 7 games. In one of the best games i have ever witness the Lakers rallied from 13 down to win the game and championship, winning back to back championships.
Hands down this is one of the greatest rivalries in modern sports. Enriched with history and great players and moments. Lets hope these two teams are able to bounce back from their recent failures and return to championship quality.
It’s annoying when you start to ponder about the game of basketball in Australia. Sure we’ve had some exports that include Shane Heal, Andrew Gaze and in more recent times, Patty Mills and Andrew Bogut… But they’re really just a few fish in a huge ocean of wasted talent.
If only the NBL could catch fire the way the A-League has done in the last few years, maybe the story would be different. With the youngsters being the real losers in this predicament, there’s never been a true grass-roots element to this particular sport in Australia.
There’s the fallacy of the National Basketball League, NBL, which has been vanishing further and further into oblivion. The clubs have always had to sign B-grade imports from America to fill the empty seats. And in a sad twist of irony, young Australians that hold any glimmer of hope need to make their way over to the states and try their luck in College hoops.
There has to be some form of change, a drastic one, and it has to be now. It shouldn’t be about competing for the kids’ attention and attempting to lure them away from other sporting codes such as Football, they should decide on their own merit. But if the next generation of potential superstars decide to go with the leather Molten ball then they should be provided with all the essentials to facilitate that dream and make it a reality.