LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex match against the LA Clippers on July 30, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.
Mike Aman | Getty Images
The biggest star of the National Basketball Association is not happy with the current state of the league.
Used by LeBron James Social media This week, the NBA expresses his dissatisfaction with the injuries he experienced during the 2021 postseason.Superstar players such as James Harden, Kevin Durant, Kawhi Leonard and James teammate Anthony Davis suffered Major injuries In the NBA’s 72-game campaign and postseason.James suggested in him twitter He posted that it was due to the decision to start the 2020-21 season last Christmas.
Without proper recovery, players can be victims of soft tissue damage due to muscle abuse. Wear was the reason the NBA considered starting a new season in January, perhaps on Martin Luther King Junior Day, after finishing the 2019-20 season in October last year for a pandemic.
James used Twitter to apologize to NBA fans who missed star players, including himself, as the Los Angeles Lakers were eliminated by the Phoenix Suns. And Davis’ injury may have sacrificed him a chance to repeat. Then James tweeted.
However, the “business side” is the real culprit. James was part of the NBA and needed to be preserved to protect media rights.
Few people in the NBA’s circle disagree with James and point out that his claim is valid, but some suggest a grand stand. Again, James is out of the playoffs and remains in the spotlight, especially on the horizon of his new “Space Jam” movie.
Still, James has a dissatisfied influence on the NBA’s problems on social platforms, and few people publicly challenge him in the league office.
NBA spokesperson Mike Bass defended the league’s stance on the issue in a statement, with injury rates “ this season was about the same as the 2019-20 season, but starter level and all-star players alike. Couldn’t play in the match due to an injury in the last three seasons. “
Looking back at the NBA’s decision to return soon, one league executive pointed out the future implications of the NBA’s media rights.
Disney And AT & TWarnerMedia pays the NBA about $ 2 billion annually, and the Christmas Day package is a premium asset for advertisers. Therefore, losing those games that day would be costly. If the NBA doesn’t play, the network will distribute “makeup goods” to marketers. That is, the network offers additional inventory to make up for lost opportunities.
The network may also request a refund of the fees paid to the NBA due to content loss. And when it’s time to renegotiate, they calculate that they make good losses and cut NBA money. And if that happens, the league will eventually experience financial distress.
The NBA calls for a significant increase in rights. Probably up to $ 75 billion, When the deal is closed after the 2024-25 season. Therefore, it is dangerous to lose fan engagement at the expense of content. And the league had already lost 40% of its revenue because there were no fans in the arena due to the pandemic. Therefore, it knew the consequences and prioritized business health over James’ concerns.
“”[The NBA] “The sooner we start, the more we can afford to do,” said Charles Grantham, a former National Basketball Players Association executive.
Due to the shortened season, players lost about 20% of their salary. If the NBA started in January with 62 games, it could increase to 25%. Not many players can tolerate the loss or have James’ resources to maintain their lifestyle.
James remade $ 340 million With an NBA contract throughout his career, including $ 39 million this season, the sixth highest in the league. Including $ 65 million annually in approval further increases overall compensation. According to Forbes,.
The average salary for NBA players in the 2020-21 season was $ 7.4 million. And of the approximately 513 contracts, only 20 players earned more than $ 30 million. Basketball-reference.com..
But now, Grantham Seton Hall, Agree with James’ frustration.He mentioned the team owner Use scary tactics, Mainly force majeure clause. This could undermine the NBA’s collective bargaining agreement with players.
Grantham then pointed out that the team’s values were floating during Covid-19 and questioned why players were losing money.Utah Jazz Sold for $ 1.6 billion A few days after the NBA bubble season ended last year.And in March, Minnesota Timberwolves agreed to sell for a small price. Over $ 1 billion.
The NBA has loved to brag about increasing team values since Steve Ballmer. Inflated the market I bought the Clippers in 2014. Prior to that, few were interested in buying NBA team notebooks. However, player unions do not receive money from those franchise transactions.
When asked if the NBA owner would sacrifice the CBA and endanger the team’s values, if the player resisted the December return, Grantham said, “The owner did it. I don’t think so. “
And on the network side, “advertisers will adjust,” Ponturo said. “It was great for the NBA and broadcasters to play Christmas games, but the NFL was so powerful that advertisers would be okay.”
Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James is holding his ankle after being injured and falling in the first half of an NBA basketball match against the Atlanta Hawks in Los Angeles on Saturday, March 20, 2021.
Marcio Jose Sanchez | Associated Press Photo
Part of the frustration comes from players being told that the December return was initially off the table.And NBA Commissioner Adam Silver Floated in January as a return September last year when Covid-19 was still popular. The problem is that the network knows that consumers rarely watch TV in the summer. And this year, especially at the Tokyo Olympics, is not in the league, ESPN, or Turner Sports.
As a result, the NBA may have taken the lead in saving viewership.
Overall, the NBA has averaged 1.3 million viewers on ESPN, ABC, and TNT national matches this season. Media executives suggest that these numbers are declining. However, despite injuries, the number of more profitable postseason viewers is increasing-at least in the first round.
According to the league, the average number of viewers in the first round was about 3 million, an increase of 3% compared to the 2019 postseason. And the NBA Play-in Tournament helped fans get involved in the playoffs.James and fellow NBA superstar Stephen Curry Average 5.6 million A play-in game between the Lakers and the Golden State Warriors. This has been ESPN’s hottest contest since the 2019 Western Conference Round.
The higher the ratings, the more the network pays. The Milwaukee Bucks vs. Jazz match isn’t necessarily a tie for evaluation, so the NBA should expect a big market final match.
But so far, without James, young stars including: Atlanta Hawks protects Trae YoungHelps maintain the NBA’s relevance.Philadelphia 76ers are on the verge of collapse First year of Dock Rivers..Phoenix Suns It ’s a success story...Mark Cuban Dallas Mavericks Messed up.. And Durant keeps the fans interested.
Even James Noticed Of Durrants’ performance in Game 5 against Bucks.
The NBA is more profitable and exciting for James, but it survives without James. Injuries are always annoying and fans like to play stars. But this is entertainment and the show continues. But next season should be useful. Warriors are back. James and the Lakers too.
Most importantly, when the star returns to business, there is normal time for the star to rest and recover.
LeBron James refocuses NBA pandemic business
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