The withering of the NBA

There is abundant criticism over the NBA. The tweet by Daryl Morey, general manager of the Houston Rockets, has highlighted the geopolitical struggle in general. Adam Silver’s predecessor David Stern had created an enormous market for the league in China. The problem is that in many ways the league had also created an trap for itself.

The backlash from China to the tweet was to be expected. The Communist regime was never going to allow such criticism of policy, even though the Great Firewall would keep most of the country from seeing it. And to Adam Silver’s credit he did give a lukewarm defense of Daryl Morey. It really could have been stronger. The concern about the loss of revenue is real and valid. The league to its credit has been tolerant of activism by its teams and players. It has nurtured good will through their support of players being outspoken and given them the agency for change

This is the main problem, both for the NBA and American business in general. You can see it as an NBA problem, but it’s much more than that. This is highlights the two sides and the two completely different ways to see the current global struggle. The Chinese see it as one front of a coherent strategy, but there’s not coherency on the part of American administration and American business. The caving to pressure and backing off is basically giving up ground that is already held. In general, the search for profits have led to long term strategic mistakes. Giving up technology, corporate transfers, joint ventures have led to competitive demand sadvantage over the last 20 years. The NBA has a huge asset, it needs to believe in its product. No way that they will give up on basketball, it’s too big. They are too invested in it. Eventually, the party will need to answer to why the access is blocked. Has the fall of the Soviet Union been so long that we’ve forgotten what we’ve learned? They entire thing was brought down by the desire for McDonalds and Levi’s jeans.

If you want something, eventually, someone needs to answer for why you can’t have it. We have what people want. If part of it is the liberty to speak you mind, then make the Communist Party answer for why they can’t have it. We should all stand together. Otherwise there is not enough clout to to keep standing. The Communist Party has a unified view, it’s time we treat it with the same seriousness.

New wheels, no really actually wheels this time

I’ve been busy, so this bike has been sitting around in the garage. But, I’m getting some new wheels built for this thing. I’ve already gotten the first one built and it’s ready to go.

NBA Finals

The NBA finals are about to start. Last year the last thing that I wanted was for the Heat to win. I’m originally from Cleveland, so the last thing I wanted was for LeBron to win a championship right away. I wanted him to suffer for his “decision” and his manufactured team. This year, less so. Personally, I hope that he wins a championship. He’s a great player. I think that he should have a championship ring. He was arrogant, but he had suffered for it. He was made to wander the desert last year. He had to wait. He did everything that he had to. He spent the off-season working on his play in the post.
Of course, I would love for the thunder to win. The problem is the rest of the Miami Heat. I don’t really want them to win. Especially Wade or Chalmers. I would rather that they kept suffering. Ideally, LeBron would leave for a different team, and then win in the first year.

LeBron James and Northeast Ohio

Let me just start off saying that I wouldn’t deny LeBron the opportunity to make as much money as he possibly can where ever that may be. That said….

What an ass!
He grew up in Akron. If he paid any attention at all growing up, he knows what it means for him to play in Cleveland. There’s a real history of sports letdowns, and this is just another on top of it. But more than that, it’s just the way that he went about it. People can argue over whether he’s the best player, or if he should have built a team around himself, but for Clevelanders that’s just scenery to keep people talking about it.

Lot’s of us left Cleveland, and lots of us discus how bad things there are and how things are better elsewhere. But that’s done between ourselves, and it’s never done in public. And if you’re not from there, you can’t say anything. With everything that’s been going wrong there, you know that there’s not a whole lot going for the people there, and that you’re one of the few things around that keep people’s minds of their problems. You at least have the decency to at least let them know beforehand that you’re not going to stay. But you don’t leave like that, because like it or not, that’s where you’re from and you don’t forget that.