Honestly, I don’t know what makes me more depressed, the fact that the NBA season is suspended, or that NBA TV keeps playing hardwood classics that remind me of how legendary this year’s playoffs was anticipated to be. I enjoy watching Magic, Bird, Jordan, Kobe, the Big 3 Heat, TMac, Duncan, KG, Shaq, and even lesser-known stars like Brandon Roy, Gilbert Arenas, and Mark Price, but this season was going to be one to remember.
Kobe Bryant scoring 81 points on the Toronto Raptors #RIPMamba
The two teams in L.A. were on a collision course to a battle as epic as David versus Goliath, but we still didn’t know what squad would represent David. Lebron James is arguably the greatest basketball player of all time and has now decided to end his career on one of the greatest franchises in sports history, the L.A. Lakers. I’d also be crazy to not talk about the pressure that Kobe’s passing has put on the shoulders of the Lakers players, and the honor that a championship would bring to his name and the Bryant family as a whole. On the other side, Kawhi Leonard is coming off of a Finals MVP and has found the perfect supporting cast on his hometown team, the L.A. Clippers. On the other hand, he’s been plagued by injuries since his time in San Antonio and had been resting throughout the season. Paul George and the rest of the hounds have been pulling the extra weight, but we haven’t had a chance to see the whole team play as a unit. The matchup between the two L.A. teams had the potential to be historic, not to mention that the 2020 Finals would most likely be against the league MVP, Giannis Antetokounmpo.
It’s sad to see a season dissolved, but these are the precautions necessary to save lives. I just wish that there was a way to quench the anxiety. What happens if by the time the season restarts players who were injured, are now active? What if certain veterans were planning their retirement? There’s also something so beautiful about the way teams play post-all star break. There’s a momentum that teams roll into the playoffs with and that steam is lost. The teams can’t even practice together.
There have been rumblings about the season restarting in the near future, but that’s an unlikely outcome at this point. ESPN analyst Stephen A. Smith even mentioned the possibility of a change in how sports games are approached and the chance that fans may not be present in arenas going forward. Nothing’s solidified and may not be for a long time.
In the meantime, there a couple of alternatives that the NBA and ESPN have put together that have been admirable. I’ve enjoyed watching the new 2K tournament that ESPN has provided on its platform. It’s a very clever way to continue building the relationship between fans and players. There’s also a HORSE competition going on with current and retired NBA and WNBA players. It’s really unique and out of the box. Finally, we have the epic 10 episode docuseries on the 1998 Chicago Bulls, The Last Dance. It’s not that I don’t enjoy the nostalgia of seeing faces that were once familiar, but the root of my and most people’s pain is that the stories of this playoffs were going to be epic. To make it worse, we were finally getting to see Zion dominate the basketball court.
As a result, at AFTR PRTY we are dedicated to trying our best to support our basketball fans with high-quality content during this break in the season. We are always open to suggestions from fans on what they’d like to see. If you love the sport as much as we do, during this time any content coming out is appreciated.