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NBA Atlanta Hawks

David Stern Continues Reign of Incompetency as NBA Commissioner

The NBA started the 2011-2012 season with a lockout and it has since ended and one of the issues that came up during the time was the gap between small market teams and the major market teams and yet the very first hours that the collective bargaining agreement what happens? A team in a major market benefits from a horrendous trade and continues to tarnish the once promising legacy of NBA Commissioner David Stern.

Now the trade involves the Los Angeles Lakers, Houston Rockets and New Orleans Hornets and the key pieces in the trade are Pau Gasol, Kevin Martin, Luis Scola and Chris Paul. When the trade does get finalized the team that actually benefits from the most is the big market team, the Lakers.

Of course the example of Paul being traded isn’t the first time a smaller market team got fleeced in a trade! One just has to look at what happened with Carmelo Anthony when dealt to the New York Knicks last season and another example is how theLakers acquired Gasol from the Memphis Grizzlies.

Though the uneven trades have been bad enough and makes Stern look bad, the game itself has evolved into a shell of its former self. There’s hardly any contact in the league anymore and the NBA continues to slip when it comes to being a popular sport as either fans are sick of the “superstar” calls or would rather watch college basketball.

Most of the issues stem from rule changes that Stern implemented and the reason for the changes was that these rules were to offer higher scoring. The issue the NBA had during the mid 1990s was the lack of offense, so rules changes such as no more hand checking and even at one point moving the three-point line, luckily the NBA realized that mistake and fixed that, and lastly what really hurts the NBA is “one and done” rule.

Basically the NBA made a mountain out of a molehill about when an individual could declare for the NBA Draft. Before an individual could go directly from high school into the draft and the rule is one year removed from high school, 19 years of age or by playing one year of college basketball.

Numerous players are declaring for the draft after playing one year of college basketball and most likely not an issue with these players as they would have stayed for at least two or three years in college before entering, players are in a rush to enter the draft and do not develop a very sound game fundamentally.

An example of this is Brandon Jennings of the Milwaukee Bucks who instead of attempting to play only one year of college basketball, went directly to the professional ranks overseas, he entered the NBA Draft a year later. Jennings is now entering his third season in the league and he has yet to shoot over 40 percent from the field.

Finally the icing on the cake on why Stern has worn out his welcome as Commissioner is the officiating in the NBA. I eluded too it a bit when talking about “superstar” calls, yet the biggest issue surrounding Stern on that front was his reaction to the TimDonaghy scandal.

Donaghy the former NBA referee who admitted to fixing NBA games, Stern did his best to discredit him and made it seem thatDonaghy was the lone wolf, that he was rogue and that there were no other officials involved. One of the examples was the 2002 playoffs with the Sacramento Kings against the Los Angeles Kings, there were clearly obvious bogus officiating in that series and Stern couldn’t even admit that.

Now, it would be great too say admitting to rigging games and being guilty would put an end to all these talk of referees and that cannot be said. Out of all professional sports, the NBA has the worst officiating it’s almost as blatantly bad as watching a WWEmatch especially when a call involes one of the NBA superstars.

There’s foul calls when there’s  no contact involved, will not call a traveling violation,  forget the three-second count as a superstar could be camped out in the lane for 20 seconds, etc….Of course if that player isn’t a  superstar those calls don’t get made.

Case in point Monta Ellis is one of the better shooting guards in the NBA and he’ll of course draw a lot of contact when getting to the rim and there will be no whistle. An example of this was against the Lakers last season, when Ellis at will was getting to the rim and on his third straight layup attempt, Andrew Bynum just grabbed Ellis’ arm and there was no foul called. If Ellis had done that to Bryant, there would have been a definitive whistle and free throws. Also, on Youtube there’s plenty of examples of nonexistent foul calls that went against Greg Oden.

Stern in the beginning of his tenure as Commissioner ran the NBA when it was extremely popular, there were great physical battles between teams such as the Chicago Bulls and Detroit Pistons, there weren’t very many one-sided trades and for the most part the players were fundamentally sound.

What can be said about the NBA is the players lack fundamentals, small market teams get screwed when their star player decide that they want to go play for a bigger market, “superstar” calls are the norm and the officiating is dreadful. There’s no doubt that Stern has worn out his welcome as commissioner and should resign immediately.