Let me comment on something David Aldridge said at NBA.com a few days ago (thanks to Mosi Platt for sending me this link).
David Berri, whom I respect and whose work I have cited positively many times in this space, makes a fair point in this article when he notes we media types almost always get the narrative wrong in labor disputes. Fans may be angry during a lockout or strike, but they almost always come back to the games they love to watch, no matter our predictions of gloom and doom during the work stoppage. But he loses me when he opines that writers/broadcasters come to those conclusions because they’re unhappy writing about labor issues instead of games, and thus we have to be “sad and angry,” which colors our writing/broadcasting.
I was, without question, sad and angry at times during the lockout. (Most notably, I am informed, during my 3:30-4 a.m. live shots.) But I predicted gloom and doom because I was getting gloom and doom from my friends/family/Twitter followers. Some of them were the usual trolls, of course, who never liked the NBA in the first place and wanted to pile on. But many were from real, honest to goodness basketball fans who were fed up. I’m glad the numbers on Christmas Day were as good as they were, and if they hold up all season I’ll be delighted to acknowledge I was wrong about the lasting impact of the lockout. But, I’d point out, there is a season. If the league and union had lost the whole year I think the discussion would be quite different.
Mosi asked me to respond to this. All I can say is that if I had to do live shots at 4am, I would be angry also.