We've heard of back-to-back-to-backs, but this is bordering on ridiculous. In order to shoehorn 66 games into a time frame that would usually allow for perhaps 50 contests, Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski is reporting this:
One league official says there are seven NBA teams that have two stretches of 5 games in 6 nights this season. Good luck with that.
This will result in some terrible, strained basketball. So much that even mainstream outlets like cable highlight shows and wire recaps probably need to mention the five-in-six caveat just a few words into their recaps of that night's "action."
This is what the NBA signed up for, as it dominated the most recent brand of collective bargaining agreement talks. Not only did they take a huge chunk from the players in terms of hundreds of millions of dollars worth of revenue, but they managed to put as much money in their pockets from gate receipts and local television and radio deals as possible by squeezing those 66 games into where 50 should have gone.
Cake and eat it too, minus 20 percent of the cake (16 lost games) but hundreds of millions in player contract gains, the continuing national TV money, and the money earned from each game.
The players? They get paid again, after missing a month's worth of paychecks, and they'll take in most of the scorn from a general public that really doesn't know how badly things went for them while the punters rightfully point to their $5.1 million average salary. And then they'll go out and attempt this schedule, while media and fans alike bash away.
Fun year, guys.
(Al Jefferson was chosen because, as Utah Jazz play-by-play announcer David Locke pointed out on Monday morning, they are more than likely going to be among those seven teams because the Jazz do not play home games on Sundays.)