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Declining interest in Basketball

Deezus

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This is a predictable and understandable feeling following the glory years of 03-10 and especially 14-18. We watched a top-5 all time player from our area lead our team to heights it never had previously reached. We got to see our city's first championship in 50+ years.

Knowing that there is little to no chance of a deep playoff run in the next few years, its totally understandable to not be as invested or feel the same joy while watching. Its like driving a Porsche for 5 years, then being given a late model Civic and expecting to feel the same. We reached the pinnacle. We experienced a championship that meant more to us than pretty much any other fan-base in sports. Totally understandable to have a "fandom hangover" at this point.
 

Soar

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1) There will never be another LeBron or a player with enough "loyalty" (hey he came back right?) to Northeast Ohio who is also that great. I don't doubt we will have good teams again, but they won't be 2014-2018 teams. At least not for a long time.

2) The NBA landscape is completely changed. Players have a ton of control and the odds of them "teaming up" in Cleveland Ohio is very low.

3) Personally, I'm just in another stage of life as well. I struggle to find time to even watch the bigger sports events anymore.
 

Randolphkeys

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This is for last season, but Forbes reviewed TV ratings and found this:

"The numbers show that 11 RSNs that host MLB teams rank No. 1 in their market in prime time among all television networks, beating the prime-time average of all other TV networks in their respective designated market area. An additional eleven teams (22 total) rank in the top-3 in prime time. When looking at cable alone, 24 RSNs that host MLB teams rank No. 1 in their market in prime time. Major League Baseball ranks No. 1 in cable prime time in every U.S. MLB market except Miami."

Ratings for national contests have decreased, but that can be said for the NBA too. Baseball's popularity can't be measured on ratings alone or even just MLB attendance - many people attend minor league games on a consistent basis.

This isn't to say baseball doesn't have serious issues - it does - but so do the other sports. We just love to talk about how baseball is supposedly dying.
Those ratings measure television ratings only, not accounting for devices. Basically, baseball is crushing television because they don't even offer the packages on devices that are popular with people 25 and under. That started to change this year when YouTube experimented with carrying a baseball game here or there which television didn't show, forcing the over 40 crowd to get out of there habits.

When streaming is factored in all these ratings, baseball is being left behind and the youngest generation - 25 and under - is switching to football a little but not at a rate keeping with population rate. On the other hand, basketball is climbing globally. In addition, the scariest news is that all organized sports are on the decline with viewership.

You can play with the numbers all you want, but hang out with teenagers a little and you will hear it straight from them... They don't really like sharing one big screen with the whole family. They like their own screen and what they feel like watching.
 

DirtyDan

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This is a predictable and understandable feeling following the glory years of 03-10 and especially 14-18. We watched a top-5 all time player from our area lead our team to heights it never had previously reached. We got to see our city's first championship in 50+ years.

Knowing that there is little to no chance of a deep playoff run in the next few years, its totally understandable to not be as invested or feel the same joy while watching. Its like driving a Porsche for 5 years, then being given a late model Civic and expecting to feel the same. We reached the pinnacle. We experienced a championship that meant more to us than pretty much any other fan-base in sports. Totally understandable to have a "fandom hangover" at this point.
It's like finishing a fantastic book or movie.

There will never be a better story in sports than the relationship between Lebron, The Cavs, and breaking the cycle of losing. I didn't want the story to end
 

Ethan

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The NBA doesn't have a villain anymore. I don't really care who wins.

Theres too much hype they build around players.
Giannis wins mvp and literally cant shoot the ball and just lost in fiba scoring 13.
Zion is treated like a franchise piece and hes just a kid that can jump.
Ben simmons got a max I think and he's scared to shoot from 3.
Harden the former "most valuable foul flopper" talked about like an offensive savant,

They'll pump up anyone to make this league look interesting.
 

DirtyDan

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The NBA doesn't have a villain anymore. I don't really care who wins.

Theres too much hype they build around players.
Giannis wins mvp and literally cant shoot the ball and just lost in fiba scoring 13.
Zion is treated like a franchise piece and hes just a kid that can jump.
Ben simmons got a max I think and he's scared to shoot from 3.
Harden the former "most valuable foul flopper" talked about like an offensive savant,

They'll pump up anyone to make this league look interesting.
Andy looks more stiff and slow footed than he did with the Cavs. Still led the way in beating Giannis lmao.

The NBA/media have certain types of players they fall in love with. Specifically volume scoring guards that don't play defense or wings that have a physique similar to Lebron, but a much lower basketball IQ.

I'll always enjoy watching San Antonio, Utah, and some of the younger teams, but it's not something I'm motivated to seek out. There's no real stories for me to sink my teeth into, Lebron chasing titles towards end of his career or James/Russ reuniting are just meh.

I just need a long break and some unpredictable playoff basketball to light my fire again
 

The Human Q-Tip

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The NBA/media have certain types of players they fall in love with. Specifically volume scoring guards that don't play defense or wings that have a physique similar to Lebron, but a much lower basketball IQ.
Q.F.T.

That's part of the "anyone can play smarter/play good defense" approach. It is an incredibly tempting trap in which to fall because the potential payoff is so big, but the odds of it actually turning out that way are basically Powerball-level lottery.
 

inliner311

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Very simple but true post. As you get older you want to try new things and if you are not entertained it is hard to invest thousands of hours into a season . I will say I am pretty excited to watch the Cavs young players. Now one sport that has lost tv ratings over the past 30 years is mlb. The amount of games and length of games is not a great mix for the casual fan going into 2020 and beyond. Yes there are millions of die hard s who are 35 and older who love mlb and it will always be popular in Boston New York and St. Louis, but both attendance and tv rating nationally are on a steady slow decline.
I feel like MLB went too much towards cable networks. I remember as a kid in the 90's that MLB was all over broadcast tv. It's was almost annoying how much they showed it because it would take the time slot of popular shows during the playoffs. It would also be on after school and in the summers during syndication shows. They were able to catch the young fan base by just being on when their favorite shows should have been on.

The NBA did the same thing but it didn't seem so annoying because by time the playoffs rolled around new shows were finished airing. I do think both the NBA and MLB are just missing a huge segment of the population with people who don't have cable or are cord cutters. It's short term gains that could hurt them really bad long term. MLB seems like the one who will hurt first but the NBA model of tv isn't far off from what MLB is. 2019 was the first year in a while that NBA viewership declined.

If I were MLB and the NBA, I'd be pushing for more of the NFL model. Instead of selling the rights to some regional sports network, try to sell it across all the broadcast networks. Cast the widest net possible for potential viewers.
 

Derek

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I haven't really watched the NBA much at all over the last 3 years. I could probably count the number of full games I've watched on my hands, and that includes playoffs.

That said, I think I'm back in this year. Probably going to spring for league pass.
 

cavsfever

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If we can take in some perspective:

This downturn was scheduled years ago. While the NBA world is championing the work David Griffin has done this summer, in Cleveland he created a window of winning that disappeared over a year ago. The return for a few extra considerations during the end of the window prevented the Cavs from trying to win for two seasons. What we are left doing is reloading, yet not winning in order to retain draft considerations. It's rough to experience, and Griffin isn't left holding the bag at all for his decisions.

Enjoy the Browns, it will all be cyclical.
Completely disagree with this. This was not a scheduled downturn. The Cavs could have remained relevant for years to come -- not necessarily a championship contender but relevant -- if the extremely incompetent front office hadn't blown it so badly. With Kyrie in his mid-20s, Lebron in his golden years still being a top player, and Kevin Love not yet 30, the Cavs were well set up to be a factor in the East for years to come and transition to a new generation while remaining a winner. But Griffin blew it by not coming up with a good response to Durant moving to GS and making some poor contract choices. Then Gilbert/Altman blew it to a far worse degree by throwing Kyrie away for basically nothing. If we had made one or two better choices in role players and traded Kyrie for anything vaguely close to his value, or traded KLove while he had value, then Lebron could easily still be here and Cleveland could be cementing its position as an upper-level organization. But because we consistently made bad decisions we are instead likely the worst team in the NBA and if we don't strike it lucky in the lottery the long-term future of the franchise could be in danger. Don't know how you put lipstick on that pig.

Before people say this was impossible, recall that one of our supposed "insiders" told us at the time of the Kyrie trade that the Bucks were offering Brogdon and Khris Middleton for Kyrie. We make that trade instead of the Boston disaster and there is an good chance Lebron is still here and this is an entirely different team.

Of course one could always argue, based on no evidence, that "Lebron was leaving anyway" requiring a rebuilding. But the fact is that Lebron left after the Cavs put an egregiously awful supporting cast around him which gave him no chance to win without being superhuman. There is no reason to think that wasn't a major factor in his departure.
 

Randolphkeys

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Completely disagree with this. This was not a scheduled downturn. The Cavs could have remained relevant for years to come -- not necessarily a championship contender but relevant -- if the extremely incompetent front office hadn't blown it so badly. With Kyrie in his mid-20s, Lebron in his golden years still being a top player, and Kevin Love not yet 30, the Cavs were well set up to be a factor in the East for years to come and transition to a new generation while remaining a winner. But Griffin blew it by not coming up with a good response to Durant moving to GS and making some poor contract choices. Then Gilbert/Altman blew it to a far worse degree by throwing Kyrie away for basically nothing. If we had made one or two better choices in role players and traded Kyrie for anything vaguely close to his value, or traded KLove while he had value, then Lebron could easily still be here and Cleveland could be cementing its position as an upper-level organization. But because we consistently made bad decisions we are instead likely the worst team in the NBA and if we don't strike it lucky in the lottery the long-term future of the franchise could be in danger. Don't know how you put lipstick on that pig.

Before people say this was impossible, recall that one of our supposed "insiders" told us at the time of the Kyrie trade that the Bucks were offering Brogdon and Khris Middleton for Kyrie. We make that trade instead of the Boston disaster and there is an good chance Lebron is still here and this is an entirely different team.

Of course one could always argue, based on no evidence, that "Lebron was leaving anyway" requiring a rebuilding. But the fact is that Lebron left after the Cavs put an egregiously awful supporting cast around him which gave him no chance to win without being superhuman. There is no reason to think that wasn't a major factor in his departure.
I think you have mistaken my summary of David Griffin's decisions and strategy for a persuasive argument for David Griffin's decisions and strategy.

I'm not defending him, I'm summarizing. Once those trades were made, Altman was left to pay the bill.
 

cavsfever

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On declining interest in basketball in general, I was kind of tuned out on the regular season last year but I really enjoyed the last couple of rounds of the playoffs. I really got a kick out of Milwaukee-Boston, Toronto-Philly, Toronto-Milwaukee, Toronto-GS. Partly because two of our "nemesis" teams (Boston and GS) got their come-uppance, but also because the Toronto-Philly and Toronto-Milwaukee series were classics. The two Trail Blazers series before GS destroyed them were also very enjoyable.

I have little patience for the regular season any more outside of checking in on the Cavs and the Wizards (my teams now), but the increased parity at the top of the league and the existence of multiple really good and interesting teams among the title contenders has made the league more interesting. So I am still really getting a kick out of the playoffs.
 

Phil Mixtape

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I've had league pass now for a few years and it's awesome, totally worth a few extra bucks a month in my opinion. I'm watching games on nights when the Cavs don't even play. I think this year in particular is the start of finally getting back to real parody in the league now that the warriors run is hopefully over. I also just like hoops as a sport more than the other big two.
 

Walter White

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I'm not quite as passionate, but I was also insanely passionate as a kid. I personally still really love the NBA though because I have always been a fan of it as a whole. The league is more interesting than ever to me as far as the off-season's, the drama, and what social media brings to the game. It's interesting to see how the game evolves.

That being said, I don't know when the next generational talent will come. Even with how good all of these players are like KD, Harden, Giannis, etc., there still hasn't been that Kobe or LeBron type player to me. There is more talent in the league than ever and the game always evolves and goes through cycles. I still love the game just for the game. But I don't see a new face for the league yet. I'm sure the NBA hopes one will emerge before LeBron retires.
 

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