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Where Has Character And Charisma Gone In The NBA?

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We are nearly midway through the 2013-2014 NBA basketball season and things seem, well, …rather ho hum. The excitement and drama that is rampant in the NFL and AFL seem lacking in that other dominant winter sport at least as far as the professional teams are concerned. In many of the arenas around the country ticket sales are down and fans are ambivalent about the games. It almost seems that the days of intense fan support and red hot rivalries are a thing of the past. That is a sad state of affairs for all of those talented athletes running up and down the basketball courts of this country in their brightly colored basketball jerseys hoping to become the next superstar of their chosen sport.
It’s true that we still have LeBron James and it is also true that his talent is unquestionable, but even so, where is the excitement? Yes, there are dozens of other very gifted athletes who are attacking the backboards and firing up 3-pointers but the pizzazz seems lukewarm at best.
When you think back to the days of Larry Bird and Magic Johnson and the accompanying chemistry and drama of that time, today seems like an entirely different era for the game that so many Americans love to play and love to watch.
In contrast, the play-off games leading up to the February Super Bowl for professional football has rabid fans screaming and shouting and celebrating throughout the country. We have players we love and players we love to hate. There are stories surrounding many of the athletes that have warmed the hearts of fans and occurrences where other players have repelled a large number of supporters by their outbursts and their cheap shot tactics. It all makes for good theater and great excitement. It’s not bad for ticket sales either.
Sadly, the same can not be said for the NBA at the present time. Surely there are heart warming stories about many of those athletes but we don’t hear about them. Certainly there must be a fair amount of drama taking place on the basketball courts across the country on any given night but we don’t seem to hear much about it. The interest level seems to be way down.
Can something be done to restore the enthusiasm that should accompany an NBA season? Perhaps a new crop of young athletes will begin to enter the fray and get things fired up for this long-loved game. One can only hope so.