2012 NBA Finals: LeBron James Finally Winning a Championship Hurts the NBA's Casual Viewership

By Bryan Lutz

Tonight we saw the crowning of a king. Miami Heat superstar LeBron James finally won his first NBA Championship, defeating the Oklahoma City Thunder in Game 5 of the NBA Finals. James was fantastic all series, proving the naysayers and doubters wrong, including myself. I am by no means a LeBron James fan. In fact, you can probably label me a “hater” as many of you kids say nowadays. But I – as many others who dislike him – watched, hoping the King would fail to win a NBA championship. Now, that LeBron James finally won a championship, why am I going to watch?

This year’s NBA Finals has peaked the interest of a lot of casual fans like myself. We – speaking as the casual NBA fan base – like sports in general, dislike LeBron James, love drama, and enjoy conflict. With LeBron James becoming a champion, that whole balloon of goodness has popped. LeBron James’ championship doesn’t affect the true NBA fans. They will still watch the sport religiously, root for their teams they love, players they like, and watch West Coast, mid-January games that consist of the Portland Trail Blazers vs. Golden State Warriors because they love the game of basketball. Similar to me watching a meaningless baseball game because I love the game of baseball. But to the casual fan, this ring ruins any interest we have in the NBA.

The NBA went from a 18-49 demographic to the days of Bird, Johnson, Jordan, etc. to a 14-30 demographic in the past decade. You would be hard pressed to find an older fan that has puts the NBA as their top sport, at least in the Midwest (where I’m from), anyways.

All the casual viewers David Stern is getting from this series will be gone now. I know I don’t give a damn what LeBron James does from here on out. He won his ring, and that’s enough for me.

The generic public never wants to see the bad guy win. Whether it’s movies, TV, sports, wrestling, or politics, the general public always wants to see the bad guy go down in a ball of flames.

Now that the “bad guy” won, what is there to watch for the casual NBA fan?

Bryan is a featured writer for Rant Sports. Although he concentrates mostly on the game of baseball, you can find him covering things all over the Rant Sports Network. 


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