When a player gets up and yells at someone on the other side of the table like Dwayne Wade recently did to Commissioner David Stern during labor talks, it does not bode well for the 2011-12 season. It definitely does not help when a guy like Wade says that the league may lose a year.
The issues here are just like what the NFL went through —money and control. As much as both sides want the control, I think their love of money will rule in the end.
That means that the lockout will end eventually and teams will go through a truncated training camp and preseason in order to get to the money making games (the regular season).
With that in mind, should players be doing more to get ready for the season (whenever it does happen)? There has been some talk about teams organizing workouts (I don’t think I’ve heard about the Bobcats organizing any though). However, there have been a number of guys going overseas to play.
Doing so has its pluses and minuses. On the plus side, these guys will get a paycheck; more often than not they are bench or reserve players that have headed that way (but more stars could go should the lockout continue to linger). Those guys will probably benefit greatly from playing in a competitive environment for however long too.
Not every player is ready to come out of college and be a contributor at the NBA level. Although the various European leagues don’t hold a candle to the NBA when it comes to competitive level, there is no substitution for experience.
The problem comes when we start to consider our star players going overseas. What if they get hurt? The Lakers will go from being perennial contenders to that team that squeezes into the first round (and gets beat) without Kobe. Should a reserve/bench player get hurt they might be saying good-bye to their hoop dreams.
While injuries are always a concern, whether you’re playing overseas, in a local pro-am league, or just down at the local park. If you want to get into game shape you have to play, right?
Although getting into game shape is good, it does not make some ready to come back to the U.S. and play. What basketball teams need is time together; the way the Miami Heat began the 2010-11 season is evidence enough for that.
Maybe a European team should come to some kind of agreement with an NBA one (at least for their second team players)? Anyway…
With the lockout likely to at least cut into the 2011-12 season to some degree, we have to think about whether we would like to see more of our Charlotte Bobcats heading overseas or just waiting it out at home.
Since the team has a lot of young players on the roster, the experience would be good. With many of them possibly looking at some serious playing time, the more they can learn now the better. However, since the team will need some of them to play when the season does start, if anyone gets hurt the Bobcats will be in trouble.
So what do you think, Bobcat Planet? More and more stars are being discovered overseas; is it worth it for our guys to go play with some of them?