Sunday, June 10, 2007

Even LeBron Can't Save the NBA FInals...

In case you missed it or had any doubts about the astounding ability of the Spurs to turn people away from NBA basketball in droves, here's word that Game 1 was the lowest rated opening game in prime time in league history. That sound you hear in the distance is David Stern sobbing, realizing that even King James isn't enough to get casual fans to tune in. Who wants to bet Stern "suggests" that LeBron leave Cleveland when his current contract is up?

Of course the bigger problem is the Spurs, who combine the NBA's most easily taken for granted superstar with several unlikeable foreign players. Tony Parker is French, after all, and don't even get me started on Ginobili and Oberto! Having already played in the third-lowest Finals of all time a few years ago against the Pistons, and with this year's series already looking like a ratings disaster, San Antonio is going to have to live with the "good but boring" label they've earned.

There is one bright side for Commissioner Stern though: I'm sure Gary Bettman is jealous of that 6.3 rating!

1 comment:

Head Dude said...

And it's not like they can expect the ratings to build after such a miserable game. At least if it was exciting, perhaps more would have tuned in.

I think one of the biggest problems is the second and third rounds in the West ended up being a huge bust, so people weren't following as closely. After the Suns' suspensions in Game 5, a lot of fans probably threw in the towel, and even LeBron's magical game 5 wasn't enough to stem the tide. If the Spurs had gotten past the Suns but then played the Mavs, maybe it would've been different since it likely would've led to at least a 6-game battle, regardless of who won. But as it is, I think fans respect the Spurs as they must, but think they were a bit fortunate against Phoenix and then lucked into playing the Jazz in the Conf Finals.

And like you said, Duncan is respected but not loved, and Ginobili is neither!