I think I just found the perfect (albeit crazy) solution how we can fix several things that are wrong about the NBA: Let us support the mediocre teams instead of the incompetent!
Before I explain my idea, first the status quo:
- The goal of every team is to win a title. Therefore, you need to get good players, small markets are the most likely to get good players at the draft. Therefore it is good to be bad.
- The problem with one good player is, that he is usually not good enough to give you a title. Unless his name is LeBron or Tim Duncan, your typical number one pick does not necessarily lead to being a title contender. Therefore, you need to be bad for several years. Which is not easy if you just drafted a good player
- Let's face it: A general number one pick cannot make you a title contender. It makes you at best an eighth seed, aka 'the place where you do not want to be'
- For an eighth seed on the other hand, a number one pick could be exactly what the team needs to make it a title contender
- Over the last years, I have heard several times that a team is dumb for trying to be a number 8 seed. Examples are the Bucks of the last years, or the Hawks every year. Or the Pacers this year. 'This is a lost year, the team should just give up!' and the likes
- Last year I heard several times 'these scrappy Suns should deserve the number one pick for trying so hard!'
- I think that every smart basketball organization can become mediocre in 3 years. Even if the team would play in the depth of hell or any other place in North Dakota (hell actually might give you a huge home court advantage)
- Furthermore, the lottery system leads to 30% of teams waving the white flag after less than half of the season. Hell, 30% of teams probably even wave the white flag before the season
- This does not happen in European leagues, du to relegation. The last teams are even the one that fight the hardest to win. I know, this is not possible in the US system that in general likes to have neither poor nor rich people - sorry, I'll stop my bad jokes now...