Strength for Everyone!
Hooray for college basketball. That's all.
Read this TSB post I did on the proposed bigger, better age limit (which wouldn't go into effect until the next CBA, in four years, so calm down and ignore this). Strangely, while I was opposed to one-and-done, this seems good for everyone involved. It's not a concession, or a band-aid on a major cultural shift—it would do a lot to build bridges between college and the pro ranks.
Look, college sophomores can still be perfectly raw and ridiculous, but with just enough seasoning to not waste our time. No one has yet suggested that languishing or wandering through the pros at a young age is better for player development than college. College isn't better, but neither is the pros. And while they do their time in the de facto minors, they will be stars. I watched Durant; didn't watch much Beasley, since I figured I'd catch him in one year.
That doesn't mean I automatically take college stardom easily, but when it's attached to guys you know should be pro, it's a plus for NBA fans. Never mind saving the NBA, or rescuing it from its own wasteful nature. Put bluntly, this age limit would do much to salvage college basketball. Real stars—not the kind that are a function of context, or smoke and mirrors—are what makes sports worth watching if you didn't pay tuition or property tax to the name in front of the funny animal. They keep you caring throughout an entire season, and I suspect that those "only the playoffs matter" fools are immune to their gravitas.
Oh and also, that atmosphere last night scared me. It's not that I don't care about winning and losing, but there's so much more going on in sports. Seriously. And yeah, it's the championship game, the definition of win/lose, but that kind of bloodlust bores the hell out of me. That probably explains why I've gravitated toward the NBA where, ostensibly, you get to spend a lot of time ignoring/expanding that EVERYONE SCREAMS, SHOWS THEIR TEETH, AND SQUINTS AT THE SCOREBOARD FOR FORTY MINUTES experience.
Which brings me to a point I meant to make three paragraphs ago. While the basketball fan in me likes the two-year age limit, it's even more fucked up from a law, justice and the American way perspective. I don't know what an analogous situation would be: If I hated some racist mascot but loved what he did for team spirit, maybe? Regardless, it makes me realize: Sports are essentially a corporate environment of control and management. Those are fundamentally at odds with freedom, not matter what we may say about style. Something like the Suns, they're just a goofy tech company.