Oh no! A state rep in Minnesota made a funny that the volunteer thought police didn't like. Pat Garofalo tweeted out the following about the NBA.
“Let’s be honest, 70% of teams in NBA could fold tomorrow + nobody would notice a difference w/ possible exception of increase in streetcrime.”
He was jumped on by the sports media and had to issue an apology. Garofalo was echoing the statements of Ray Lewis who thought an NFL lockout would lead to greater crime. Guess it is not funny when a small time state rep says it. The irony of the website saying politics and sports should not mix is that the media has pushed Jason Collins, Michael Sam and the Russians disliking gays for the last year. Add to that any racial that is a "first". Who-whom: the media is the only arbiter of what is appropriate.
Before I go, let us look at Garofalo's statement. If 30% of teams remained, there would be ten teams left. That is roughly 120 players. Due to the concentration of talent with teams following the trio of stars idea, yes, 36 players carry the NBA. ESPN/Disney underwrites the NBA through its television contract, so it has to downplay just how much of a niche market the NBA has become, skewing to a black viewership. The lockout surveys showed how most white sports fans did not miss the NBA, but blacks did. The lockout and subsequent return at Christmas showed how no one really cares until Christmas and even then, most fans don't tune in until the playoffs.
Garofalo has a point. Not a lot of people would notice the missing 70% of teams. The financial leeches of the other 200 players (baby mammas, family, agents, publicists, hookers, strippers) and gamblers with too much time and money on their hands. I'd gladly watch a 20 team league that played a mini-season, then a playoff with all 20 teams with the top four getting byes, then a repeat of that. Four-five months, break a month, then repeat. This will never happen. Hell, the NBA bought the New Orleans franchise. Rather than fold it, the NBA sold it to Tom Benson. Bill Simmons can say the NBA has potential owners lining up, but why did the New Jersey Nets sell to a Russian billionaire with questionable associates in Russia and not anyone else with the promise of a move to New York City shortly thereafter?
State Rep. Pat Garofalo, you stand strong and keep that good sense of humor of yours.