The annual GM poll has not been that favorable -arguably deservedly- to the Celtics: They have underestimated Rondo, who's currently out indefinitely due to a very serious injury, and Bradley's defensive talents were only slightly appreciated. On the other hand, Olynyk is regarded as the absolute steal of the draft, so that's good news for the future of the franchise. Yet there's this one little gem that sheds some gloom over that future, as Ric Bucher reports:
One GM included in the poll named the shift from commissioner David Stern to Adam Silver, set to officially take place in February, as his biggest worry. The concern is that Silver’s focus on monetizing the league is far greater than Stern’s. “I don’t know how much he thinks about the integrity of the game,” the GM said. “He’s more about selling widgets.”
Well, if you enjoy the rising market value of the NBA and actually care about the increased focus on athleticism, the hype built around the superstars etc. you will like that news. However, since you're reading a Celtics fan blog, I seriously doubt that's the case because a) you're an old school basketball fan and prefer the grit-and-balls type of games the Celtics have proudly given us all day, all night (hi, tb727) and b) you are simply a Celtics fan that has still not forgotten about the fact that the official NBA website featured an article that wanted us to lose badly, you know, just before the final game of the 2012 ECF. Oh, and if you haven't been blinded by your wet dreams (is that physically possible?), you know that the Celtics can't attract big name superstars. Hell, even Orange Juice Mayo (that sure is a weird combo) snubbed us.
"No, I don't smile." Adam Silver. (Zimbio)
Before making a big deal out of one GM's worry, one should also remember that it was reportedly Silver who sided with the hardline owners during the lockout and that Stern actually wanted to resolve the issues as soon as possible and held a more negotiable position. It's also known that Silver wants to monetize as much as he can, for example via putting ads on jerseys.
Now, in the current shape of things, a business-minded commissioner sure looks like would hurt the Celtics' chances of a championship even more. In the end, bigger, warmer and less tax-loving markets have a better chance of attracting players, and it is also a well-known secret that the NBA has not favored the Celtics in recent history. I'm not saying that Stern had an anti-Celtics agenda, but you know, it was just that the cards weren't dealt the right way. Yet here's the Silver lining: The prospective boss of the NBA is also anti-tanking and wants to structure the NBA around the NFL model to give teams an equal opportunity to compete for a championship. It has been reported that Adam Silver is not against the idea of a contraction as well, a move that would greatly help the talent/team ratio to the Celtics' favor.
This is what we know for a fact: Silver is going to shake things around, and I mean really shake them. Perhaps not immediately, but that day will come sooner or later. The way he looks to monetize the league further might hurt hardcore basketball fans and could mean bad news for the Celtics, yet if Silver manages to structure the league so that each team has more or less an equal opportunity to contest, that's definitely good news for the Celtics given our recent struggles in luring superstars.
In the end, all I can say is this: if you're getting ready to celebrate Stern's retirement, maybe, just maybe, you're rushing things.
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