With the 2012-2013 NBA All-Star weekend approaching, I began to think about how the All-Star Weekend has changed.
In the 1980s, the league’s best players looked forward towards competing against each other in order to earn bragging rights for a year. Players now are content with making cameos during the Saturday night events and giving minimum effort during the game. The players would skip the weekend altogether if they could. Now players are more concerned with using the time to improve their public image and making business deals.
The NBA can borrow an idea from Major League Baseball in order to bring back interest in to the entire All-Star Weekend.
Baseball awards the winning side in the All-Star game with home field advantage during the World Series. The NBA can tweak this idea by saying, if one conference wins the Three Point Shootout, the Slam Dunk Contest, and the All-Star game itself then that conference gets home court advantage.
With the prospect of securing home court advantage in the Finals, all playoff teams will have proper incentive to ensure that all healthy players who are available to participate in the three events during All-Star Weekend. You get the top three point shooters and dunkers participating in the Saturday events. Also ensuring that the league’s top stars playing on Sunday.
For the players, they will have the ability to ensure that media will center in their city for the start, and possibly the end, of the Finals. This opportunity will be a big boost in gaining or negotiating sponsorship deals after being on the big stage at the end of the season.
The NBA will benefit by the participation of the league’s top players in all three of the major events during All-Star Weekend. The NBA’s business partners will benefit by regaining the exposure that they received back in the 1980s, where people planned their weekends around these events. Having the Superstars will ensure a more competitive game. This will have the fans wanting to spend their money to purchase tickets for the weekend’s events.
With the requirement of needing to win all three events, it is not something that should happen on a consistent basis, but when opportunity would arise, both sides would have motivation to play hard to either clinch or prevent the acquisition of home court advantage.
This idea if implemented would definitely get more folks watching the events on Saturday night. Then if one conference sweeps those two events, people will tune in Sunday to see if they can seal the deal and clinch the home court advantage.
Home-court advantage should go to the team that earned it. It's already tough enough to push your way through the western conference, you shouldn't have to lose home-court advantage to the east because Kobe threw up 40 ridiculous shots in the all-star game.
Baseball has never had it right. Being a St Louis Cardinal fan it was really tough to see the Cardinals win every World Series game at home but still lose the Series in 1985 and 1987 because it happened to be an odd year. The current method is even dumber (though it worked out well for the Cards in 2011).
Perhaps I'm overly passionate about this, but I DESPISE, I mean LOATHE, the way the MLB All-Star game determines home-field advantage in the World Series. I've heard different arguments supporting it, and while I understand there are a variety of pluses, I believe it at the end of the day it takes away a team's control over its destiny, and puts too much power of influence into one game. Case in point: the 2005 season.
The East won that year 125 to 115. The Spurs worked hard that season to earn a number 2 seed in the West, and even harder to upset the number 1 seed Phoenix Suns. And, as well all know, had homecourt advantage in the Finals against Detroit.
But imagine however that the MLB approach to the NBA All-Star game had existed, and the Spurs had found themselves that year with one less game at home. And as close as that series was, it's safe to say that perhaps under such a scenario, things might have turned out quite a bit differently. Thus, a decision to elevate the importance of the All-Star game would have a profound effect, one that I would argue would be far too influential. Why should a team potentially lose home court advantage because of a team of stars from their conference couldn't pull out one stupid victory in one stupid All-Star game four months before the finals? It's just preposterous.
I think the voting would have to change. It would be interesting to see this if the top teams were honored with the most participants. I don't like the fan-vote.
@kavika6 True but realize, the winning conference doesn't win or lose the home court by winning or losing the All-Star game. You would have to win ALL 3 competitions to get it. So It would happen like twice out of every 10 years. But if a conference has won the 2 main skills competitions, then both sides should pick up the intensity to secure the home court. Also the game will be different for the top teams, because they all have it in their best interest to work together to get the W.
@kavika6 I'm not a Rangers fan, but if I'm not mistaken, the Rangers had a better record than the Cardinals in 2011, no? Yet the Cardinals went on to win in seven games after earning home field advantage through the All-Star Game. Obviously, the Cardinals deserved to win under the given circumstances, but still, it seems wrong to me that the Rangers lost the ability to play the majority of games in Arlington simply because of a stupid All-Star game. This year, the Giants earned homefield advantage simply because Justin Verlander laid a big fat egg on the mound for the AL, although it wouldn't have mattered much anyway as the Giants were clearly the superior team.
@ryankxlu that's why you have one conference win the game, 3pt shootout & the slam dunk contest. if you don't sweep all three then you don't get home court. So in actuality you it would not happen on a frequent basis. But you get the best players participating
@growndhawgg Yeah, if this were really to happen, would you sen Jeremy Lin? Seems like the casual fan would... fortunately he seems to have some brains in that Harvard head and declined the invite.