Thursday, May 11, 2017

Sweep and Snooze, Fitfully

Dub Fan, Probably
So I'm back in the Bay Area for the first time in 11 years for work -- long story, not germane to sports, and also why post rate has gone down -- but it's put me back in the warm cocoon of the Bay Area. I can't tell you how great and powerful the weather is to make your day better and to make all of the shoddy real estate in the area tolerable, or how nice it is to be in a place where NPR is mainstream, rather than left wing...

But the purest moment of Bay Area Bubble? It's watching Warrior Fan in his native habitat.

You see, this is the only part of the country that thinks Kevin Durant is just the best, that Draymond Green is lovable, that Stephen Curry doesn't look kind of like a beautiful soul gone bestial with that weird little beard of his, that JaVale McGee isn't a career malcontent who is finally good now just to make the rest of the NBA gnash their teeth a little more in frustration. And so on. They aren't completely unaware that America rejoiced when Cleveland won last year, and thinks their beautiful hoop team are somehow the Monstars while also being the Globetrotters, but they forget about it easily enough.

It's also officially odd, I think, that the NBA playoff ratings are up this year, even with the paucity of close series. Everyone seems to be clearly aware that it's going to be Cavs-Dubs for the third time in a row, and that the Cavs have been playing possum for months now to conserve their energies... but that hasn't translated into folks tuning out of the games.

But what it creates, honestly? An utterly conflicted fan base. I don't have cable in my current living condition, which has meant that my game viewing has been in bars and gyms... and Dub Fan? Watches intently, but not with a great deal of passion, and wants to see his team as little as possible.

And honestly, do you blame them? The eight games of Blazers and Jazz have rarely been competitive, and Durant's knees and Curry's ankles and HC Steve Kerr's tragic back make every minute of every game a matter of Please Don't Get Hurt and End This Already. The Dub bench isn't as good as it was a year ago, and the entire year has been a waiting pattern for seeing what happens in June.

Which hardly seems like must-see TV, but the numbers say otherwise...

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