When OKC made their run to the Finals, I thought now might be the time to give the NBA another chance. The Thunder reminded me so much of the Kings back in the day. They're fun to watch, play as a team, and have a whole city who support them 100%. We used to be like that here. I remember sitting in Arco during the Kings away playoff games watching on the jumbo tron and various big screens they set up around the sold out arena. Then the refs, commish, selfish players and Maloofs took the fun away.
For what I hoped would be an exciting, 6 or 7 game series, I attempted to put the hurt aside. It's hard to explain the feeling, even to former fans of big city teams. When you only have one option, that one option becomes your everything. You know those desperate relationships that end with so much suffering and heartbreak you can only cure your broken heart by moving on to the younger, hotter option (college basketball)? Yeah, it's like that.
By the 3rd game, I realized I was still hardened by the past. I couldn't help but question the refs and what the NBA would find more profitable. Would they prefer the Heat to win in Miami and all the buzz that would create, or a 7 game series with all the ad revenue a league could dream of? Would they screw OKC the way they repeatedly screwed the Kings (Jazz in '99 and Lakers in '02 immediately come to mind)?
Clearly, I'm not ready to move on. The Donaghy/Refs scandal is well in the past.
Yet, I still watched Game 5. The Heat won decisively, no question as to who the better team was on that night. Scott Brooks is a class act. I hope you've all seen the video by now of his speech in the huddle.
So maybe there's a chance?
I was only slightly surprised to see all the attention LeBron received in the news coverage. If you didn't know anything about the sport, you might think it was played and won by an individual. You can't blame the reporters for that though, right? He's the story. I'm sure LeBron would say it's all about the team.
I, I, I, I, I, me, me, me, me, me. THIS. This, is why I can't stand the league.
There's a chance the Maloofs will leave Sacramento and the Kings will stay. Slim, but still possible. We all know Stern can't live forever, so there's a chance the new commish could do a better job (the bar's not set that high). However, as long as the league, coaches, reporters, officials and fans allow the sport to be driven by an individual superstar, not the team, the chance of me coming back as a fan are nil. I'm done.
Sad, but true. I think I'm better off with the replacement I've found anyway.