The NBA Needs a Competitor
As the New NBA season is about to kick off, I can't quite get over all the buzz it generates from basktetball stakeholders Worldwide. From fans who wish to see their favorite teams and players do well, to players who have been fighting tooth and nail to prove their readiness at NBA level, the excitement the NBA brings to the table is second to none as far as basketball is concerned.
On the surface it makes a lot of sense seeing as America is the most popular market for basketball in the World, the home of basketball as well as its most lucrative market. Notwithstanding, almost no where else on the planet do players scramble to make the cut as the NBA. Should it be though? I mean I love the depth of talent the NBA has on display as well as its competitive nature, but should it really be the single dominant basketball league in the World?
In other to answer that question, we need to make comparisons of the advantages and disadvantages of not having a strong alternative to the NBA. The biggest advantage I can think of as previously mentioned is the depth of talent on the leagues roster that makes for greater, more exciting competition. NBA level players are no doubt the most talented in the World and watching such a high concentration of talent on display is a blessing.
However, disadvantages in my books run deep. The most significant for me is the lack of exposure for talented players who didn't or are not in the NBA to showcase their talents to the World. This of course means that they earn far less than their NBA counterparts, and are held in less regard.
There is also the case of the NBA franchises running a virtual monopoly which is almost independent of FIBA, the basketball's governing body. They make their own rules and subject players to their own restrictions which sometimes are are loggerheads with FIBA. On one side a decentralization of basketball system may sound like a good thing, but it probably isn't especially when the parallel system does not offer a better alternative. The onus has always been on how to make the NBA more exciting, and rules keep changing, but I don't think it is a good thing to stray too far from the Widely accepted basketball rules which FIBA remains the custodian.
Furthermore, competition in other climes has proven a net positive for the development of that particular industry and baskteball is no different. Soccer is one example with various leagues other than the English Premier leagues which players can venture to. Individual sports have usually generated more excitement with competition among top sportspersons. even entertainment wrestling has grown with the introduction of a challenger to the WWE's monopoly.
The NBA needs a competitor not just for the development of basketball as a whole, but for the sustained growth of the NBA itself. I believe development of other leagues would add a lot more excitement and global appeal to the sport of basketball, and make Mega stars of the already huge superstars of the NBA.
In the next part of this article I'll do my research and discuss the potential leagues which could produce veritable competition for the NBA.