The first two weeks are lost due to the lockout, and my brain is becoming a living exhibition a mouth of a sit-com character with Tourettes. That said, I’ll say this once, and only once, parents, if you have a kid reading, skip this part, kids, if you’re already reading this, don’t tell your parents: F*ck the owners. F*ck the players. F*ck greed. F*ck this lockout. The reason why we’re in this situation, is that nobody panicked. Nobody cares about the season, what everyone cares about the money.
Josh Childress (of all people) has tweeted a big rant in which he noted how players are (apparently meanly) called greedy, while owners are called businessmen. No. Both groups are greedy, and both groups are businessmen. That’s how it should work. And while I’m disgusted by the owners stance, I’m not going to jump out and defend the players just because they are more sympathetic.
Now, speaking of tweets, Steve Nash made an impassioned rant earlier today, defending his stance, Jared Dudley was answering questions about the lockout, but my tweets were apparently too comical to be answered (too bad, I wanted to know how disappointed he is by the fact that he’s earning less than Childress). All of the tweets come down to one thing: We’re the good guys, sorry for the lockout. I’m not going to analyze every single tweet, because they all seem to come down to the NBPA-wide “we’re the good guys and we’re sorry” rhetoric. The only player that actually stood out to me was Brian Cardinal, who mocked the Stand United hashtags and Let Us Play tweets in one of his tweets, generating widespread applause from us bloggers. And then he posted one himself. And here I was hoping at least one player wasn’t a mindless robot.
Look, while I appreciate Nash, Childress and Dudley taking the time to express their lockout views in public, answer questions, etc. I’m disappointed by the fact that they are only doing so because the NBPA launched an all out attack for public approval, a political move that might pay off for them in the future.
In fact, having just experienced 24/7 election coverage in Poland, I see many similarities between some of the campaigns that the players and owners ran, and the language used. We have it all — the self-martyrdom, the lies, the viral campaigns. All I’m missing is a few attack ads (which reminds me of TBJ’s take on them) and a public debate between the two parties. Seriously, this is politics. I don’t know why they’re building the political capital, I don’t know what’s their next move, but it seems to me that if the lockout gets longer, public opinion might give an advantage to one side, which, looking at the current sentiment, will probably be the players. Imagine if fans started ignoring the NBA, avoiding NBA-affiliated sites, or, oh woe, buying from them. While such boycott would include 50 thousand people (hardcore fans) at maximum, it would be enough to scare the owners off a bit — since that’s one of the most important markets they have, with League Pass Owners and such dominating it. However, I’m a law student, not an economist, so I can’t tell you that’s the case for sure.
What is my point here? That what’s happening on twitter and such, is just part of the game. The game that cost us two weeks of a season. If the players cared about the fans more than about their money, they’d have shown more willingness to cave on the BRI. If the owners cared about their fans, they’d just give the players the 53% they want.
While almost everyone is picking sides in this mess, I’m going to do what I did in the elections. Vote away from the two big parties arguing with each other. Thanks to the multi-party model of the Polish parliament, I was able to do that. If I were, however in a bipartisan model, forced to choose between the Players and Owners, I’d just take my electoral card, add an additional box, mark it with an x and label it “NBA Basketball”.