Friday, January 6, 2017

Careful There

On the one hand, this idea floated by National Basketball Association Commissioner Adam Silver makes a lot of sense. A pay-per-view plan that allows fans to purchase viewing of parts of games. The relatively small court and high speed of modern basketball usually mean fairly close contests, and those invested in just the final score may not want to see the first 35 minutes of traveling, grabbing, flopping and posturing. Great plays will make highlight shows, or at the very least YouTube, so they won't be missed. People like me, who follow the local team but don't watch much else, especially until the post-season, would be interested.

But on the other hand, Silver's suggestion might help reinforce the idea that the last five minutes of an average NBA game -- which can last quite a bit longer than five minutes with time-outs, intentional fouls and TV commercial breaks -- are the only five minutes of the game that matter. The league already has a problem drawing casual eyeballs during the pre-playoff season since so many of its teams make post-season play. They may not want to create the same problem for themselves on a game-by-game basis with this idea from Silver.

Of course, in the end what will decide the matter is how much money the leagues and television networks can make off the plan. What it does to the game or the fanbase is a secondary concern.

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