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The Student News Site of Palo Alto High School

The Paly Voice

The Student News Site of Palo Alto High School

The Paly Voice

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What is it about that NBA that people like? Is it the dunks? The star players? The two million dollar signing bonuses?

Does anybody realize that there is barely any fundamental play in the NBA? Nobody plays defense; maybe that’s why there are so many spectacular plays, maybe that’s why there are so many dunks.

Good NCAA teams play basketball the way it is supposed to be played. They incorporate fundamentals. They actually play good defense, which means players can’t do spectacular dunks all the time.

It is common that a NBA team will score over 100 points in a game, while it is rare to see a college team score that much. The reason is that NCAA teams play good team defense. If a player drives down the lane and tries to go up for a dunk, a defender will be there to stop him. In the NBA, if a player drives down the lane, most of the time it will be open for a clear dunk.

Yes, the NBA has great individual defensive players, but what happens when those payers are not responsible for guarding the opponent with the ball? If the other players on the team play weak defense and don’t work together, then they will get scored on. It would be like a fence with huge holes in it. A good NCAA team is, however, a solid fence. The players work together as a team to create an impenetrable, solid wall.

NCAA teams like Duke and Stanford pass the ball well and don’t have any one person doing everything for the team. In the NBA teams tend to have key players who lack strong supporting teammates. For example, the Philadelphia 76ers’ Allen Iverson takes most of the team’s shots, and so others usually are not incorporated on offense. It is essentially like the Three Musketeers in a battle with only on Musketeer fighting. This is possible because The NBA is filled with individual superstars like Michael Jordan, Kevin Garnett, Kobe Bryant, and Allen Iverson.

Superstars have multi-million dollar contracts, and since they are superstars, everyone accepts that they are good players. A superstar’s coach cannot reduce the player’s playing time, otherwise the player will become unhappy, which could lead to the coach being fired. If a superstar decided not to play good defense all year, but was good on offense, the coach would not be able to take away his playing time.

In the NCAA there are no million dollar signing contracts. In fact, there are no contracts at all. If the coach does not feel a player if performing to his full potential, he can just sit him on the bench for the rest of the season. If a player does not play defense in the NCAA, he could even be cut from the team, or the coach could substitute any other deserving player for him.

Fans come wanting to see superstars and remarkable dunks and pay sometimes as much, or more than $200 for a ticket. Maybe this is why the NBA’s defense is not as emphasized as the NCAA’s. What gets on the news clips are players like Kobe Bryant leaping in the air, doing what? Dunking of course. That’s what the superficial fans want. Most fans do not know enough about the game to appreciate team play and good defense, therefore they settle for the excitement of a dunk.

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