The NBA, like the United States, is bankrupt:
The NBA is expected to borrow $175 million Thursday to help teams close operating losses brought on by the economic recession. UPDATE: The league said on Thursday that it borrowed an additional $25 million, bringing the total to $200 million.
The league will distribute the funds among 15 teams that requested them, with each team getting no more than $13.33 million. The borrowing, which is in addition to the $1.7 billion credit facility used by the league, comes as NBA teams are dealing with lower attendance and a loss of sponsorships.
Details of the new line of credit, first reported by SportsBusiness Journal, suggest the NBA was not going door to door on Wall Street looking for cash. Rather, it was JP Morgan and Bank of America that reached out to the league to inform the NBA they would be willing to lend money. The NBA, recognizing that borrowing opportunities are scarce and that some teams would benefit from an infusion of cash, took advantage.
At one time in my life, I wanted to be a sports broadcaster and dreamed of being either a play-by-play announcer or an ESPN in-studio reporter. This is one of the reasons sports play a major part in SBPDL. It is beyond contestation that sports are the only reason Black Run America (BRA) was allowed to be erected in first place.
Without sports (and other forms of entertainment) positive examples of Black people in the United States would be rare. The nightly news would be deprived of the stirring exploits of Black athletes excelling in basketball, football and baseball, which serve to contradict the reality of Black life in America.
Being bombarded continuously with the type of stories only thugreport.com finds time to promote is something the average TV viewer cannot stomach, so a healthy dose of Black athleticism to wash down the harsh pill that is reality goes a long way in maintaining the illusory power that maintains BRA’s dominance.
Nothing could be further proof of Black Run America than the recent commotion over LeBron James, a talented basketball entertainer whose services recently were open to all NBA teams as he became a free agent.
NBA commissioner David Stern has said the league is projecting losses of some 400 million dollars this season, and has lost hundreds of millions in each year of the current labor contract.
Stern said the NBA has shown the players' association those numbers in hopes of demonstrating why the league wants "significant changes" in the next deal.
The current collective bargaining agreement expires in July 2011, and this weekend's All-Star festivities come amid rumblings that players and management are far apart on the issues and labor unrest or even a work stoppage could be in the league's future.
The growth in salaries for NBA players and a major source of the revenue stream for NBA franchises is the TV contract they have with ESPN and TNT. Without billion dollar television deals, all sporting leagues would be in a financial hole that would be classified as unrecoverable.
Back to LeBron, the former Cleveland Cavalier decided to sign with Miami in a closely watched drama that saw every major news channel and newspaper dispense countless man-hours in covering the story with exacting detail.
He leaves behind the city of Cleveland feeling like a bride left at the altar on her wedding night. The city was already reeling financially and having a basketball thespian of James’ caliber meant that Cleveland had some economic viability left in her. Now, like the entire state of Ohio, Cleveland can brace for a future without the eyes of every basketball fan attuned to Cavalier games just to catch a glimpse of LeBron James.
And that future is one of high crime and deplorable job prospects as the state of Ohio is economically doomed. LeBron James and his achievements on the court couldn’t have saved the state, even if he had stayed in Cleveland.
Professional basketball is a sport that is rigged, fixed in a similar manner to professional wrestling though the former sport has the temerity to continue operation under the guise that the games aren’t predetermined (pro wrestling, though this guy might not believe it, is fake and the promoters have admitted such).
The 2010 NBA Finals saw Boston lose in seven games to Los Angeles, traditionally the most heated rivalry in the league. Ratings were high at a time when the league desperately needed them. However, ratings are declining at an accelerated rate, which should bring about the legitimate question as to why such a huge ordeal was made over LeBron James in the first place?
The answer to this quandary is quite simple: LeBron James has become the face of the league at a time when the NBA is losing relevancy in the mainstream and seeing its fan-base erode like a child’s sandcastle at the beach with the oncoming tide.
LeBron is not a thug, unlike many of the players who share the basketball stage with him as employees in the NBA. Thus, the league has had a sustained image problem that has been difficult to remedy and has accordingly cast all hopes behind LeBron being the savior.
The NBA is 80 percent Black (curiously, it got an “A” from Richard Lapchick’s BRA promoting organization for diversity) and many believe the league is full of “thugs” a racially loaded term that is used frequently to describe the behavior of Black people and the actions of many players in the league.
Even in a league dominated by Black players the ugly threat of racism interfering with action is omnipresent as white referees penalize Black players for fouls at a greater rate than white players.
With baited breath the world waited – at least according to the media, which treated the LeBron free agency as news on par with the death of a Pope or the OJ Simpson car chase – to find out where Mr. James would call home.
Though the NBA is virtually irrelevant, the decision by Mr. James dominated all discussion and supplanted every other story transpiring with astonishing efficacy. Interesting that for a league with a declining fan base and TV ratings that Seinfeld reruns routinely beat, such a story would be generated by one player’s inestimable value.
Looking at the one study by the marketing research firm National Media Research, Planning and Placement called The Politics of Sports Fans, the NBA’s popularity is declining but remains high in cities like Cleveland, Salt Lake City and San Antonio.
The latter two cities have no other sports for citizens to follow, but Cleveland had LeBron. Now, he is gone and all that remains is the reality of Cleveland that he helped make tolerable.
Sports once represented something I yearned to be a part of, but no longer. My views could be no further nor better expressed than these words by Theodore Dalrymple:
There could be no greater snobbery than to feel contempt for the hundreds of millions of people world-wide for whom this event is of consuming interest. When bread is assured, circuses fill men’s minds.
The NBA is irrelevant, yet Mr. James dominates the news. This whole ordeal represents – to me – a perfect epitaph for what remains of the United States as we move closer and closer to the prediction of a forgotten 1997 movie.
As hundreds of millions of people live vicariously through their favorite sports personality and teams – like the character in Big Fan - I feel inclined to yell at them, shouting the same derisive statement heard in the volleyball scene from Meet the Parents – “It’s only a game, focker!”
Alas, we live in Black Run America where toleration to riots by Black people in Oakland is a given and where voting rights being inhibited by a Black supremacist isn’t grounds for a Justice Department investigation.
Those who can see can only look on in horror at what is unfolding all around them, and smile.BRA needs Black stars and LeBron is one of the few, untainted and unburdened by disasters personal choices, Black athletes with marketability left.