I'm a sports fan. I participated in sports when I was younger, and I still do occasionally The sport du jour is basketball. I'm a fair weather Bulls fan. That weather this year has been partly sunny/partly cloudy. As such, I have not been watching every game, up to and including the playoffs. And now for the rant.
Basketball is a non contact sport. But I guess someone forgot to tell the NBA. I do NOT like watching the Indiana Thugs -er, Pacers for this very reason. Where the game calls for quickness and skill, they substitute body blocks and fouls. Granted, each player is allowed six cheap shots per game, but Indiana has players whose main goal is to foul the other team. Not score, not block shots, but foul.
|(Steve Mitchell/USA Today)|
I watch professional sports to see professionalism. I understand physical play, but don't want to watch an athlete who is consistently a step short make up for it by being a brute. Take it like a man. If you're beaten, step up your own game. And then to have this behavior reinforced by classless fans lowers the level of this spectator sport one more rung.
Do you know how much they charge for seats to see the Bulls in Chicago? (A lot, in case you don't know the answer - I happen to know tickets are considerably cheaper in Milwaukee.) And they pack the stadium. But I have no interest in paying those prices for an exhibition in taking cheap shots from someone who can't keep up. The NBA needs to school the referees on calling the same fouls on all players, regardless of their "star" status.
Don't get me wrong, I admire LeBron's skills. The Heat has skill. That's one of the reasons I don't understand when they stoop so low. Play the game and stop the brawling. The Heat plays the Thugs next. May the best team survive.
There. I feel better now.
Kudos to the Bulls for their grit this season. Short handed, injured and then abused, they put on a good show.
And now back to our regularly scheduled program . . .