Put me down for “less is more” when it comes to the NBA and expansion. Give me fewer regular season games. And instead of expanding beyond 30 teams, I’m all for contraction. For almost four decades now, there’s been an elite tier of NBA teams, a jumble in the middle, and then dregs at the bottom. In no other professional sports league is the star player more important.
So why is Adam Silver embracing Mexico as a potential target for expansion, even if it’s 5-10 years down the road? This is almost as bad as Roger Goodell trying to make London happen. Both are so far down the list of needs, and when you get to them, there are so many better options, you have to wonder why it came up in the first place.
Here’s Silver on Mexico:
“We’re not looking at expansion at the moment, but at the time we do turn to expansion, just as we’ve had enormous success in Canada with the (Toronto) Raptors, we do see enormous opportunity in Mexico City and think it could become the franchise for Latin America,” Silver said.
“Mexico City is a city with over 20 million people, a country of 130 million people, and a huge Mexican American population. We’re only looking at it from a more general standpoint – and we’re playing games (there) again in Dec. (the Brooklyn Nets are playing against the Oklahoma City Thunder on Dec. 7 and the Miami Heat on Dec. 9). It’s something we’ll continue to keep eye on.”
High-profile free agents won’t consider Portland or Phoenix, but sure, let’s entertain Mexico as an option for a franchise!
Yes, things are cyclical, but look at this list of playoff droughts:
Minnesota Timberwolves, 13 seasons
Sacramento Kings, 11 seasons
Phoenix Suns, 7 seasons
Philadelphia 76ers, 5 seasons
Orlando Magic, 5 seasons
The Timberwolves should snap that streak this year. Same with the 76ers. The list gets worse when you add franchises that haven’t won a playoff series in forever:
Milwaukee Bucks, 16 seasons
Charlotte Hornets, 13 seasons
New Orleans Pelicans, 9 seasons
Detroit Pistons, 9 seasons
Imagine if the NBA took one or two teams away from each conference, and in a nod to socialism, distributed them to the rest of the league, worst teams first.
You’d raise the low end of the NBA significantly.
Just say no to NBA expansion.
And all that being said, the first city that should get a team has to be Seattle.