Everyone is talking about what happened with Michigan coach Juwan Howard and him “striking” an opposing coach in a college game. He got suspended for five games for those actions. Now, this wasn’t an Apollo Creed strike. He just hit him and that was that…
Anyway, I bring this up to talk about the NBA and what came to the surface this All-Star Weekend here in Cleveland. Let me preface it by saying that the actual events went extremely well and the city looked great!
What an incredible weekend! Huge shoutout to everyone who made #AllStarWeekend here in Cleveland such a success! It really made the city look in a positive light!
— Cleveland Sports Talk (@CLEsportsTalk) February 21, 2022
What I noticed is the fact that all the players not only like each other but basically love each other. The camaraderie between players and coaches is extreme. It’s a brotherhood that stems through the generations.
Now, wouldn’t one say that is a good thing? Sure, some may believe that and in a lot of ways it is good. However, for a league to thrive there needs to be some rivalries, hatred, disgust and this league lacks that and it showed at All Star Weekend.
Does anyone remember, “The Malice at the Palace?” It was a 2004 brawl that took place in Detroit between the Pistons and Pacers. These two teams were fighting each other to the extreme and it got so bad it extended into the stands!
Of course, I’m not calling for a brawl every game. What I am saying is there was some real hatred and pissed off players that wanted nothing more than to destroy the opponent.
Flash forward to 2022 and all of the players just want to dab each other up and take instagram pics with each other saying how cool everyone is…
I was watching the All Star Game and it was worse than the Pro Bowl. No one is expecting that specific game to be an intense battle, but it makes me wonder what the actual league is like…
Are there real rivalries in the current NBA? Are there teams that literally dislike each other so much there could be a Juwan Howard-like strike or the potential of a Malice in the Palace?
It’s unlikely…and that honestly makes the competition not as exciting from a fan standpoint. After all, fans love to see some angry players or coaches. It makes the games better when there is more intensity.
In summation, in order for the NBA to improve as a league there requires some new-found rivalries in the future or players and coaches that actually hate each other.