Thank you Mr. Stern.
Yes, David. You have made my NBA life for 2011 completely confusing. Between a game that might not have happened (Earl Clark Charity Basketball Game,((AT least I saw D. Howards shoulders up close(((and realized how little of a man I am)))-))-) if not for your lock-out and the fact that I feel like a child sneaking a bottle of liquor every time I watch an NBA game while living in the state of Kentucky, 2011 has left me completely confused with how to view your league. From January to the NBA Finals, I felt like I was in a LOTR story where there was one ring everyone sought and somehow evil(the Heat) was going to victoriously hold it high. As the Heat manhandled competition throughout your playoffs, I began to wonder if there was any good in the world. I could already see LeBron and Wade having a party in Miami to celebrate their “not just one” ring. Then the finals came and my one hope(Kobe and co.) for prevention from Evil’s prevailing over good had been walked out of the way by an old team(I don’t need to say who) that seemed slow and incapable of keeping up with the athleticism of the Heat.
Then walked in a German that I keep expecting to have game more like Shawn Bradley instead of Larry the Legend. And that is when the sick German saved your league from falling prey to rewarding a desire for championships at all costs(*) to cause players to screw legacies and seek easy winning.
There is only one redeeming thing that came out of 2011 for the NBA imho. That is Dirk Nowitski etching his name in the basketball hall of fame by getting the championship that he has needed to separate himself from the other good players who never got a ring.
As Mark Cuban(your most ideal owner whose involvement and passion have him head and shoulders over Comic Sans) was smashing his 400th margarita since the Finals, NBA players had a feeling that there was going to be a lockout. Summer came and fans of all classes got to see the likes of KD and Kobe up close killing in high school gyms and outdoor courts all over the country. For those who love legendary basketball stories that are told in barbershops and gyms, your lockout brought some of the best youtube videos of street ball that we might ever get.
I myself benefitted from your lockout by getting to see some amazing dunks and bad basketball in a small gym in Bullitt County. This game was one of many great games over the summer to benefit charities. Be thankful Mr. Stern that you do have many players who are willing to play basketball for charities. Your lockout has shown the best of behavior and the worst out of many of your NBA players. There have been countless stories of what your players have done with their free time.
But then Mr. Stern, after months of negotiating and many stories of how the lock out might never end, finally it was announced that Christmas would be richer than many of us thought. There would be an NBA season.
Let me get to the point of my writing this letter. Mr. Stern, that is when I saw the most disappointing decision I have seen you make. I was down with the dress code. I have been cool with many decisions you have made. But I am afraid you have reached your Larry Holmes. I am afraid you have reached your Favre stage.
You have done a lot of good for the league. But in the last ten years between basketball designs that failed to refs that have cheated, its been a rough haul. Mr. Stern, you don’t have to listen to a guy from Louisville, Ky. But then again, I do feel I have some connection to this situation. Because my town almost got the hornets. And if we had the hornets, that would mean we’d have CP3. And maybe the NBA wouldn’t have had to buy the franchise. And then this whole mess would be out of your way.
But the facts are simple:
-Chris Paul and the Hornets see that the best thing for him to do is to leave.
-The Lakers have the capability to pursue Paul and leave the Hornets with more of a solid team than prior.
-Chris Paul wants to play with the Lakers and the Lakers really want him.
-The Hornets management agreed on the trade.
Would the trade have been good for NBA basketball? Yes. Why, because you had a chance for the next version of Magic/Bird? The East against the West. A rivalry that would make the NBA start to feel special again.
But instead LeBron, D-Wade and Bosh are all three in Miami just waiting for their free rings. Dirk is thanking Mark Cuban that he was able to pull this one out while their (Miami’s) chemistry is still being developed. And the rest of the league is waiting to see who is the next big trade to be yielded away by big brother.
Can I call you Dave? Well, Dave, this is your predicament. Shaq is retired. Kobe is getting old. The Cavs owner just got an updated version of Microsoft Word and LeBron and D-Wade are sitting in wait for their first rings that will inevitably be followed by several more. It’s not looking good to be honest Dave.
So what should you do Dave?