NBA Set to Return, But Does Anyone Care?

It’s almost time for the NBA again, as all 30 teams tip off training camp Tuesday. The preseason is slated to begin in 11 days.

Now, the only remaining question is … does anyone really care?

The NBA had a successful run in its Disney bubble, if you consider that the league reported zero positive COVID tests. But the season also generated the least-watched Finals series since groups began tracking television ratings in 1986.

Keep in mind, this wasn’t just any Finals series. It featured LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers, traditionally the NBA’s two biggest draws.

You would have thought facing the Miami Heat, LeBron’s former team, would have added to the intrigue, too.

Instead, the ratings went straight into the tank. No matter how the NBA and media tried to spin it, the ratings were an absolute embarrassment.

League officials have tried to blame the time of year on the fact most people ignored its return, saying no one really watches TV in August and September. They have also frequently added that the league had to go head-to-head, which generally kills everything else on television.

But the league’s insistence on social justice overkill also played a role. Commissioner Adam Silver finally admitted as much, saying that for the 2020-21 season, social justice messaging will only be delivered “off the floor.”

There’s certainly nothing wrong with supporting human rights, but the NBA has always been selective in the social justice messages it supports.

Either way, ready or not, here comes the NBA. Will anyone give a hoot this time around?

Here’s to guessing the answer will still be no.

Written by Sam Amico

Sam Amico spent 15 years covering the NBA for Sports Illustrated, FOX Sports and NBA.com, along with a few other spots, and currently runs his own basketball website on the side, FortyEightMinutes.com.

28 Comments

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  1. I broke up with the NBA in 16′, and we had been in a bad relationship since ’10. Ever since the Olympics flop in 04′, the Lebron, Carmelo, Chris Paul, “It’s ok to lose as long as we get paid” attitude ruined NBA basketball.

    When you add in their, “You’re all stupid unless you think like us” mantra, I refuse to watch highlights, and won’t even discuss it with friends or family who say, “Did you see the game last night?” “Nope, and I don’t care.”

    The MBA aka “Mandarin Basketball League” will be gone soon. The Beijing Lakers and Wuhan Warriors has a nice ring to it. Enjoy your loyal fan base.

  2. Pssssh. Didn’t even watch the Match III due to Curry. I’m sure between the diehards and “cheap” tickets they can put asses in the seats while ESPMS carries water for the league. But, me and those I know have moved on and won’t be back.

  3. I don’t. And it’s more because we need to get back to normal. It was weird to watch games without atmosphere. It also hard to watch knowing the business in the surrounding area isn’t profiting as they should from the game. so no, I won’t care until we get back to normal. Until then, it’s all blah.

  4. Yeah Wake Me Up On May14th Olajuwon Rockets Sonics Game 6 On Thursday May 14, 1987 in The Western Conference Semifinals One Of The Best Games You Will Ever See Olajuwon With 49 Points 25 Rebs And 6 Blocks The Only Player To Record Over 40 Points And 25 Or More Rebounds in a Playoff Game Since 1987 Sonics 128 Rockets 125 in 2 OT.

  5. Some good points made above…
    It’ll be a long season with nearby small businesses shut down, and likely ‘No Fans Allowed’ covid BS throughout.
    If there ever was a REAL cause for SJW’s – it’s these insane shutdowns!

  6. Somewhere along the line pro sports forgot the idea that they are producing a product and trying to sell it to consumers. I blame the ownership mostly. They let the adult babies in their employ get away with all sorts of crap, and not just the social justice posturing. The NBA is the chief culprit in this. The NFL is not too far behind. What the NBA needs is a modern day Kennesaw Mountain Landis to come in and exert some kind of control over the players and the owners. Not holding my breath for that.

  7. So odd that in recent years I have zero interest in the NBA….and College hoops is becoming the same. It just felt it became an exclusive, individualistic, spoiled culture thing instead of grown men competing in a sport. To put it another way….you still see mixed race prayer circles after NFL games….after game interviews where players are respectful and thoughtful….and coaches of all colors ripping into players who are lacking and slacking. Watching the NBA now is like watching a YO MTV Raps video with cash, gold chains and Ho’s phone numbers falling out of shorts during the games….

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