Sweat rolls down the face of Miami Heat’s LeBron James during a break in play against the Milwaukee Bucks in the first half of their NBA basketball game in Milwaukee, Wisconsin February 1, 2012. REUTERS/Darren Hauck (UNITED STATES – Tags: SPORT BASKETBALL)
By Marcus Shockley
The NBA All-Star game hasn’t been interesting to me in some time. Over the years, the NBA as a product has become harder and harder to watch, and to be blunt the only time it’s really interesting is when the playoffs roll around. But this year, as the story line became Lebron making a crucial turnover at the end of the game and therefore continuing to fulfill his ever-growing legacy of fourth quarter disappearances, I could not help but wonder how it is that writers and fans actually take these games in all seriousness.
Look, if you like the NBA All-Star Game, that’s great, and the whole point of the game is to show off all of the NBA’s brightest stars and best athletes under one roof, in one game. It is not part of the season. It does not count in the record column and the stats are not part of the player’s averages. Defense is often non-existent, but who would want to watch an NBA All-Star game without dunks or scoring?
There’s nothing wrong with the NBA All-Star Game, it’s a good time and despite people talking down the dunk contest, they still watch it. It was only a year ago that Blake Griffin jumped over a car; as an aside, it’s interesting how people who have never dunked and never will dunk are so quickly dismissive of the amazing, but hey, that’s the business the NBA is in.
I’ve been critical of Lebron since long before his collapse in the playoffs against Boston two years ago. I see his approach to the game to be a perfect example of what the shoe company deals in big time AAU (especially in Lebron’s high school days) have created, a player whose been coached and trained his entire career to look at winning as being able to sell more product, not winning titles.
But now that people have soured on Lebron, every opportunity to downgrade him is seen as part of his legacy. Missing a crucial pass in the All-Star Game? Come on, that’s hardly important. It’s practically a pick up game under bright lights where the score barely matters and no one could tell you which team won in 1990 or 1995 without having to look it up.
Complaining about a turnover in the All-Star game? Really? The only people who should be caring that much are the people with money on the game, because they are foolish enough to actually bet on an All-Star Game. Everybody else? Just sit back and enjoy the show.