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Sports Column: They built this mess

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I have no problem with athletes having a social option. Not at all.

I do have a problem when they use their forum and platform to state their opinion. Because if they are allowed to use their job to push a topic then this practice should allow everyone to do the same.

The National Basketball Association has been a hands off type of organization. It is all about growth and rebranding the organization into something else.

That rebranding is leading to some interesting things.

First, the NBA viewership is down 13 percent this season.

The league didn’t think that the ratings could get lower than the 2019-2020 season after COVID-19 ran amuck through the league and the league’s playoffs.

But guess what? It has gotten lower.

It is believed that it will tank further. It will continue to decline which will hurt revenue. This could be one reason that the league is trying to develop more market overseas.

I haven’t watched the NBA since my family took one of the most relaxing vacations ever. We got a hotel on the beach and did nothing but drive to get slurpees and an evening meal. The evening meal included watching the NBA Finals because they were on the televisions. We didn’t leave the restaurant until the game was over. 

I don’t know how long ago that was, but it was a very long time because my youngest daughter Hannah was way too young to get a learner’s permit, but we let her drive in the parking lot of the hotel so that she could say that she had driven in Florida.

Last week in the NBA there were two incidents where bottles or a product of some kind were thrown at NBA players. This should never happen, but it has.

I didn’t see either incident live, but I did go back and watch footage. It should have never happened.

Kyrie Irving was then mocked by the fans and obscene chants erupted and cheered loudly at Irving.

This is not just the only incident, but there have been several in the last month.

When will it stop?

It probably won’t until NBA commissioner Adam Silver steps up and tries to pull the ship back to the middle. However, that ship is sailing full steam in the wrong direction and it looks like Silver is along for the ride. He took a 20 percent pay cut last season with the NBA losing revenue because of COVID.

Silver is under contract until 2023. Will the owners lose enough money by then to keep him around?

The NBA is not built for me. I do miss watching the games. I think this game has been taken away from me like the Highway 7 bridge at Pruitt.

Jeff Brasel is the sports editor of the Newton County Times. E-mail him at sports@newtoncountytimes.com or follow him at twitter.com/jeffbrasel.

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