George Karl was quoted as saying; “I’m sure Commissioner (David) Stern won’t like this, but I think the product would be better if we shortened the season. When we start playing in late October, the people are thinking football. If you could just get us less fatigue [in a shorter season], I think you’d have a better product. When they started on Christmas Day, I thought, ‘This is not a bad idea. This should be the start of NBA basketball … Maybe start Dec. 1 and play 62 games, whatever number they’d come to.”
This idea could actually be good for the NBA. On an 82 game regular season, injuries are more likely to happen because of over-fatigue and the NBA season really begins picking up steam on December or January anyway.
More and more people are actually getting behind this idea as some coaches, players, sports analysts and even fans believe this will be beneficial for the NBA. Analysts claim that a shortened season will benefit the overall quality of the game, while still others claim that a shortened season will benefit TV ratings as well.
I believe a shortened season will actually be what the NBA needs right now. The reason why the NBA is always just second best or even third best to the NFL and MLB is because the NBA is so long. Fans could care less about regular season games between two mediocre teams in November, as what fans want to see are quality games between the best teams in the NBA.
Shorter seasons will mostly affect NBA executives, the owners, some players and the media; those who are really squeezing every dime they can get from the NBA. Who really suffers here are the fans and some of the employees directly or indirectly working for every NBA game.
We will always have sloppy and ugly basketball littered in between regular season games as coaches will rest their best players who are clearly fatigued and/or injured. Coaches will sacrifice wins in order to protect their players and what we get are games that are poorer in quality and often ends in lopsided affairs. I am an advocate of shortening the NBA season if we will have better quality basketball games as a result. If we can avoid players getting injured, if we can avoid coaches “throwing away” games and if we can avoid fans waning interest in the NBA, then we should exhaust whatever avenue we can for the betterment of the NBA. Shortening the season could be where we can start.