Jul 29th, 2007 by Answerman
The coverage for the team of NBA players is the same every single year (for some reason there is another international tournament every year) and it is as annoying and damaging every year.
It always starts with extreme optimism. The team of NBA superstars is announced. The Press drools over all the big names. Now, since Team USA hasn’t been blowing out competition, we hear about how all the bad things from the prior year will be turned around.
This was from last summer in the USA today:
“The team that will represent the USA in the world championships next month in Japan is an unselfish group comprised of superstars and role players. Except for its youth and lack of a true, dominant center, it is reminiscent of the 1992 Olympic Dream Team”
With expectations set so extraordinarily high, there is nowhere to go but down. The pre-tournament coverage becomes a build to euphoric expectations, that can only be met with disappointment.
As a result, when the inevitable disappointment occurs, and Team USA dares to lose, or even not play in a dominant fashion, we get backlash from the very same group that spent the last few weeks building them up. For example, after the Greek team upset Team USA last year, one of the Greek players guys had the audacity to say:
“I think this is the NBA, one against five,” Papaloukas said. “It’s different rules” in the worlds.
(imagine if a Team USA player said something like “I guess Euro-league just isn’t that good” after any win. He’d be tarred and feathered)
…in any event, Papaloukas won, he gets to rub it in. But, our friends at ESPN have the gaul to agree:
“The U.S. is learning that, one international defeat at time.”
As if, they lost that game against Greece because they chose to just go 1 on 5 on every possession. We all know that didn’t happen. On some occasions, the offense got broken up due to good defense, and as a result, the U.S. players went one on one to create something from nothing.
Moreover, the loss is not simply treated as a loss, instead, its somehow a personality flaw applicable to the entire NBA. NBA players are - selfish, play no defense, have no teamwork, paycheck collecting, and are unintelligent.
For example, look at the comments to my prior posts from a guy named Jason:
“Surely this can be put down to bitterness at seeing Team USA humbled by the Greeks, the Argentinians, etc. who show superior levels of IQ to the ’superstars’ that get trotted out by the Yanks“
Is this for real?
When you try to explain to critics that the rules are different, the team doesn’t play together for a long period of time, so as a result, they struggle against good teams - it is cast aside. Those are viewed as “excuses” because a team as talented as Team USA should be good enough to overcome these adjustments.
Why? Because of the ridiculous pre-tournament coverage. That’s absurd. Its not even like they lose in a 7-game series. Any team can lose one-game, even to an inferior opponent - and the international team aren’t necessarily inferior. They’re just different. They play basketball differently, under a different set of rules, in a different league. Yet a loss under these circumstances shows a perceived of the entire league
A player could spend his entire summer staying at the club until 5 am, sleeping with groupies, and licking vodka out of girls’ belly-buttons, sell a video diary of his summer exploits called “NBA Gone Wild” and get less criticism than those who go to play in FIBA.
Stay tuned for more.