On June 30th, the NBA Collective Bargaining Agreement expired, and the owners locked out the players. There is a 87% chance that sentence makes no sense to you.
The Greatest Blog Of All Time is here to help with all of this, answering
some all of your questions and giving mediocre quality suggestions on how to entertain yourself in the meantime!
First off, what exactly is happening?
Collective Bargaining is something that people make a living off of understanding, so there’s no reason to get into huge detail. It is basically the agreement between employees and employers over fair working conditions and payment. Lockouts in sports happen for a variety of reasons, but this NBA lockout is due to owners hating the rising player salaries.
Because players make a LOT of money. Obviously, it can be argued that they don’t deserve it. But let’s look at it this way:
Say there is a guy who is a computer engineer. In fact, he’s one of the absolute best in the world. However, in this scenario, engineers can only work for about 15 years MAX before all that engineering destroys their hands. In fact, the average career length in this scenario is a little less than 5 years. Would we be justified paying someone who is astounding at what they do a lot of money for 5 years? Maybe so.
All of that being said, the average salary of an NBA player is still $4.8 million a year, which is a massive average amount. And the owners want to regulate that. Let’s not forget that the owners also make ludicrous amounts of money because of these players, and they can do it for longer than 5 years. Is there a right side to root for here? Yes. It’s the fans, who don’t benefit from anything other than association with the team.
And yes, there are many more factors involved in this debate, such as re-working the salary cap and such, but this is a basic overview, so that’s a basic rundown of a lockout.
So, there’s nothing to watch, NBA-wise, for a while. What can you do? Here are a few suggestions:
1. Check out highlights of the lockout shortened 1998-1999 season
The 98-99 season was a thrilling one, as the San Antonio Spurs beat the New York Knicks in the finals to win their first championship and to make sure that the Knicks never return to relevancy. Naturally, the Spurs had the full support of every American.
However, the season only lasted 50 games, as a lockout that started on July 1, 1998, carried over to January 20, 1999. While it’s SUPER depressing to realize that this whole crappy situation could last til next year, it is also important to remember that it WILL end.
So watch the Spurs win their championship, and keep hope alive.
2. Learn how to pronounce the Rookie’s last names
For every Derrick Williams and Marcus Morris in this year’s NBA draft, there was an international name like Enes Kanter, Donatas Motiejunas, and
Jimmer Fredette Jonas Valanciunas. It can be difficult to talk about all of them without a translator, so here is The Greatest Blog Of All Time’s SUPER helpful pronounciation key.
Enes Kanter – Ee-nuss Can’t-er. This is simple enough. Fun fact: his last name means blood (kan) and sweat (ter) in Turkish. In English, it means “possibly not as good as we think.”
Bismack Biyombo – Biz-mack Be-yum-bo. If the NBA draft was all about selecting the player with the best name (which it SHOULD be), Bismack would have been picks 1-17.
Donatas Motiejūnas – Doughnuts Mot-a-wait, what is that thing? Is that a line above the U? What in the world is that thing? I’m pretty sure that’s a noise only dogs can hear.
Jonas Valanciunas – Yo-nuss Val-an-okay, let’s not kid ourselves.
Okay, bad idea. Instead, you can just….
3. Debate how bad this draft class was
People don’t watch basketball to see fundamentally solid tall guys get into great rebounding position. They pay money to watch guys who can jump over buildings and can dribble a ball flawlessly through a minefield. But this draft was full of the former, rather than the latter.
So in order to get your mind off the fact that no basketball is happening, you can instead debate whether these guys would even be making an impact. For example, let’s talk about Enes Kanter.
Kanter is a bit of a mystery now, because he was supposed to play in the U.S. last year but couldn’t. He had committed to play for John Calipari and the Kentucky Wildcats last year, but the NCAA wouldn’t let him. Apparently he had been making money playing basketball, which is a no-no. This is funny, because that fact hasn’t stopped anyone else from playing for John Calipari.
Still, Kanter is a solid piece for a team looking for a rebou-know what? Let’s go back to the whole Kentucky thing for a second. Did you know that Kentucky fans sent death threats to NCAA President Mark Emmertwhen Kanter was ruled ineligible? How absurd is that? That’s what Kentucky fans do, apparently. They know no limits when it comes to trying to win. That’s why they pay Calipari huge wads of cash to bring in really good players for one year. Note to Kentucky: it doesn’t work that way. You can’t keep losing your best players every year and hope to win it all.
Where were we? Oh yeah, Kanter. Whatever.
4. Look at Kawhi Leonard’s hands
Certain players amaze NBA scouts with certain talents. Lebron James can leap. Dirk Nowitzki can shoot. Kawhi Leonard amazed them with his massive hands. Take a look.
Leonard’s hands are 9.8 inches long. When he spreads them out, they measure nearly a full foot in length (11.3 inches!). So yeah, sure he’s 6’7 and can jump really well, but nobody really notices because they can’t get past his E.T. hands. Here’s a picture of them in action.
It’s fascinating, but it’s terrifying.
5. Watch the NFL
Nope. Nope. Nevermind. My bad. Crap.