Darth Wolverine

June 13th, 2012 at 3:54 PM ^

In case anyone doesn't know, this was a rhetorical question and David wasn't literally asking Jim if he beats his wife. Jim talked about that comment and said as such.


June 13th, 2012 at 4:00 PM ^

This is an old and commonly used phrase thats supposed to give a catch-22 because you cant Yes or No answer it (yes makes it seem like you did in the past, and no makes it seem like you are currently doing it). It's not an original line whatsoever.

snarling wolverine

June 13th, 2012 at 4:06 PM ^

The question was "Is the NBA lottery fixed?"  He could have said "No" and laughed it off.  It was a little unsettling that he hesitated, and then went with the "beating your wife" line.  He doesn't need to be coy.

Personally, I've never understood why they can't just conduct the lottery on live TV, instead of doing it behind closed doors with some financial guy as a witness.  That's not evidence that it's rigged, certainly, but it invites the speculation.

Darth Wolverine

June 13th, 2012 at 4:42 PM ^

All he needs to do to make the belief it is fixed go away if do the drawing on live TV in front of all the teams' representatives and audience. I will always believe it is fixed until the NBA decides to do that. Look at the Cavs last year. They were GIVEN the first and fourth pick after Dan Gilbert bitched about tampering with Lebron. Stern didn't want a lawsuit, so he gave the Cavs the first and fourth picks.


June 13th, 2012 at 7:44 PM ^

OK, but he could avoid hearing the question if he'd let the actual lotto drawing take place on live TV,

No he couldn't.  You can see video anywhere you like of the very first draft lottery in 1985 and that's the one that caused people to say it was rigged in the first place.  People will believe it's rigged because they want to, the same way people believe in aliens or a CIA conspiracy to assassinate Kennedy.

snarling wolverine

June 14th, 2012 at 12:22 PM ^

No he couldn't. You can see video anywhere you like of the very first draft lottery in 1985 and that's the one that caused people to say it was rigged in the first place.

True, but that's partly because the way the NBA did it that year was pretty amateurish, with Stern grabbing an envelope out of a bowl. People have speculated that the NY envelope was weighted or had its corner deliberately bent.

The league claims to be doing it in a much more sophisticated way now, with ping-pong balls being drawn automatically out of a hopper, like a real lottery. I don't think it'd look too suspicious if they aired the drawing now.


June 14th, 2012 at 12:43 PM ^

That the envelope was refrigerated, so it felt cold and different?

And I don't think they're doing the ping pong balls anymore. It's weighted differently now. But if they did it like the lottery, on tv, with labeled ping pong balls, it would probably help a little. Though we might need them to count them first to convince everyone. Like a magic act...."Excuse me, Elgin Baylor, does this feel like a normal ping pong ball to you?"


June 14th, 2012 at 12:47 AM ^

Over and over, maybe he should stop acting like more of a douche each time. There is no transparency to his system, and Stern is an egomaniacal prick. He may not like the question, but if he wanted to have any credibility, he could have just admitted it was a fair question, and then lied and said 'no, it's not fixed'. Stern was exposed as the arrogant jerk he has always been... He loves the pub when his ass is getting kissed, but takes cheap shots when asked a tougher question.


June 13th, 2012 at 4:12 PM ^

I know what the question was, my post was in response to the thread title.


The question was absolute garbage for 2 reasons:


1. Conspiracy theories are so boring. Really? NBA Lottery fixed, aliens are reading our minds unless we wear tinfoil hats, 9/11 was an inside job, blah blah blah. Bored.

2. Lets say, hypothetically, in the .0001% chance it is fixed, why bother asking david stern of all people? Of course he would lie about it. He's asking a question that has 1 answer -- "no" -- regardless of the truth. What's Stern going to do, respond with something like "Wow, yeah, it was fixed. You caught us. Guess i should resign in disgrace and get sued by literally anybody with a remote stake in the NBA or paid for a viewing experience of a fixed league."

Can't fault the commish for thinking it was a dumb question and I think its a dumb question whether you think the draft is fixed or not.


June 14th, 2012 at 9:04 AM ^

Then he cant say "no" without problems.

I would not be surprised if it was rigged.  Who says it has to be random?  The NBA is a private league that can hide this type of thing.  It is none of our business if it is rigged or not.

As Michigan Family, we should know that DB leaves nothing to chance.  Everything is scripted.  Why does anyone think the NBA Lottery is random?

snarling wolverine

June 14th, 2012 at 12:25 PM ^

If it's true, then Stern shouldn't have the job he holds.  I certainly disagree with the idea that it's "none of our business" if it's rigged.  

People pay a lot of money to attend NBA games, with the expectation that the competition is fair and honest.  If that were to turn out to be false, it'd be a huge scandal and cripple the NBA's business.  Just look at how defensive the league got over the Donaghy allegations of crooked refereeing. 

Socrates Johnson

June 13th, 2012 at 4:01 PM ^

I heard this live.  It was a good interview (a little heated), but the question was asked by Stern as an analogy.  BTW, the earlier interview with Charles Barkley was amazing. 

O Fo Sho

June 13th, 2012 at 4:12 PM ^

basically went Jim Everitt on him.  That was a great interview.  I can't stand Rome 99% of the time, but I do commend him for asking the question.  I also can't stand Stern, however kudos to him for giving it back to Rome. 


June 13th, 2012 at 4:23 PM ^

a small man who has overseen a league populated with athletes with unbelievable skill sets, no helmets or masks to conceal their personalities from the audience, and marquee franchises in marquee cities.  What has happened to the NBA?  Sucks a little worse every....single....year.  Stern got a legit dig in on Rome, but he's failing as a commissioner.


June 13th, 2012 at 5:39 PM ^

What are you talking about?

The NBA's entering a golden period. There's a new generation of intriguing, attractive stars (Rose, the OKC crew). A villain that everyone loves to hate. The level of play in the playoffs has been tremendous. The league is doing its highest ratings since the Jordan era. And the league avoided labor apocalypse this year. The NBA is as healthy as its been since the 1990s.


June 13th, 2012 at 6:04 PM ^

Golden Era....you too young to see the 80's & 90's? The league is full of players who grew up street balling it and have watered down the game I once loved. Stern is a punk who sold the game down the river to make stars. NBA is closer to WWE then ever. They travel, carry the ball and push off ever play. Would Lebron be so good if he couldn't carry the ball, take extra steps or start every drive by first pushing off the defender to create a advantage? Stern saw that the greatest athletes were ok ball players so he threw out the rules that he wanted to.

Hell he flop that he crys about is his creation because he made it so the defender just had to be to a spot before the offensive player when the rule had always been that the defender must have position and both feet set. Stern sucks and he prays daily that Betteman sticks around.


June 13th, 2012 at 6:43 PM ^

Um, no, to the first question. The first team I rooted for was the '79 Sonics, then those mid-80s Bucks teams that were great but always stuck behind the Sixers and Celtics.

Just because the mid-80s to the late 90s were a golden age doesn't mean we aren't on a verge of a new one. The NBA went into a ratings tailspin when Jordan retired. The play went downhill with all the high schoolers entering the league, who hadn't ever really been challenged by comparable competition and thus never really had to refine their games. Even LeBron took 8 years to figure out that he needed to learn a post game.

Both the team play and the ratings have returned. The conference finals just did there best numbers in over a decade. The most successful teams are playing more team ball today than any teams since the Bad Boy Pistons. San Antonio was amazing to watch, and OKC has emerged as a potentially great team as they've moved away from the isolation that characterized their game last year. Add in defensive play by the final 4 teams this year has been sublime, without the grabbing and holding that used to characterize defense in the era of the Riley Knicks.

I find the rest of your complaints pretty empty. The complaints about carrying the ball go back to at least Isiah's enterance into the league. People have literally complained about traveling in the NBA as long as I can remember. The WWE complaints? The league was far more violent, and the defense less well played in the 80s than today (the refs have actually taken a lot of the passion out of the playoffs by T'ing up everything even beginning to approach a confrontation and any woofing at all). If your reference about the WWE is about fixing ... that of course goes back to the Even the criticism of flopping goes back to at least Laimbeer.

I'd criticize Stern for three things.

1. The charge-block call threatens to damage aggressive offensive basketball in the same way it has in college, where it's absolutely a plague.

2. The Chris Paul thing this year made no sense.

3. He was so freaked out by the Palace brawl that he dicated changes to the way conflict is officiated that has changed the game for the worse. 




June 14th, 2012 at 12:44 PM ^

If you mean it's doing better than when the NBA was an unpopular joke, then yes, it's regaining credibility. But it's a long way from it's golden age...and a way's to go to get to the silver age.


Table of NBA Finals average Nielsen ratings since 1976
Net. Year Series Rating
CBS 1976 Boston Celtics 4, Phoenix Suns 2 11.5
CBS 1977 Portland Trail Blazers 4, Philadelphia 76ers 2 12.7
CBS 1978 Washington Bullets 4, Seattle Supersonics 3 9.9
CBS 1979 Seattle Supersonics 4, Washington Bullets 1 7.2
CBS 1980 Los Angeles Lakers 4, Philadelphia 76ers 2 8.0
CBS 1981 Boston Celtics 4, Houston Rockets 2 6.7
CBS 1982 Los Angeles Lakers 4, Philadelphia 76ers 2 13.0
CBS 1983 Philadelphia 76ers 4, Los Angeles Lakers 0 12.3
CBS 1984 Boston Celtics 4, Los Angeles Lakers 3 12.3
CBS 1985 Los Angeles Lakers 4, Boston Celtics 2 13.7
CBS 1986 Boston Celtics 4, Houston Rockets 2 14.1
CBS 1987 Los Angeles Lakers 4, Boston Celtics 2 15.9
CBS 1988 Los Angeles Lakers 4, Detroit Pistons 3 15.4
CBS 1989 Detroit Pistons 4, Los Angeles Lakers 0 15.1
CBS 1990 Detroit Pistons 4, Portland Trail Blazers 1 12.3
NBC 1991 Chicago Bulls 4, Los Angeles Lakers 1 15.8
NBC 1992 Chicago Bulls 4, Portland Trail Blazers 2 14.2
NBC 1993 Chicago Bulls 4, Phoenix Suns 2 17.9
NBC 1994 Houston Rockets 4, New York Knicks 3 12.4
NBC 1995 Houston Rockets 4, Orlando Magic 0 13.9
NBC 1996 Chicago Bulls 4, Seattle Supersonics 2 16.7
NBC 1997 Chicago Bulls 4, Utah Jazz 2 16.8
NBC 1998 Chicago Bulls 4, Utah Jazz 2 18.7
NBC 1999 San Antonio Spurs 4, New York Knicks 1 11.3
NBC 2000 Los Angeles Lakers 4, Indiana Pacers 2 11.6
NBC 2001 Los Angeles Lakers 4, Philadelphia 76ers 1 12.1
NBC 2002 Los Angeles Lakers 4, New Jersey Nets 0 10.2
ABC 2003 San Antonio Spurs 4, New Jersey Nets 2 6.5
ABC 2004 Detroit Pistons 4, Los Angeles Lakers 1 11.5
ABC 2005 San Antonio Spurs 4, Detroit Pistons 3 8.2
ABC 2006 Miami Heat 4, Dallas Mavericks 2 8.5
ABC 2007 San Antonio Spurs 4, Cleveland Cavaliers 0 6.2
ABC 2008 Boston Celtics 4, Los Angeles Lakers 2 9.3
ABC 2009 Los Angeles Lakers 4, Orlando Magic 1 8.4
ABC 2010 Los Angeles Lakers 4, Boston Celtics 3 10.6
ABC 2011 Dallas Mavericks 4, Miami Heat 2 10.2




(From wiki)

And it's lost ground in the favorite sports ranking, dropping as far as 5th last year (behind auto racing!).  Since the popularity crash it has pretty much stayed about the same-


So the play is certainly better, and there's a better group of players than there has been in awhile. But the interest is just growing back up from the "does anyone watch this anymore?" levels of post-Jordan to....ok/70's level of interest.


June 14th, 2012 at 7:47 AM ^

I am referring to the quality. Sure some stars carried and travelled, but now every roll players gets away with it. The team concept is false. Sure there are 4-5 teams, but it is a league dominated by the isolation play.

The league has been pussified because every player feels entitled. Thus when someone hard fouls them a fight almost breaks out. In the bad boy era it was understood that you were getting it if you drove the lane. Now these kids get all offended because they might get hurt. The refs can't control the game because Stern can't control his players


June 13th, 2012 at 4:18 PM ^

"The lady doth protest too much, methinks."

If the question as as "ridiculous" as Stern said it was, he wouldn't have gotten so upset.  He would have done a "yeah, right" and not even thought about it again.  Stern was definitely not happy with the question, and it apparenlty "struck too close to home."  

All they need to do is put the old system back in and get rid of the lottery.  Then, there won't be any questions,  and the "coincidence" of Patrick Ewing ending up in the league's biggest market during the first lottery can stand alone as one of the biggest farces in sports.