ASA: NBA conspiracy theory

November 18, 2004

American Sports Analysts

By Lee Kostroski

Special to VegasInsider.com

It’s officially basketball season in our world, and the next eight months will be spent in very similar fashion to tonight. The routine is the same night in and night out from now until mid-June when the NBA Finals are over. After a typical day in the office, we come home to our families but our workday doesn’t stop there. How can you be a good handicapper if you don’t watch games? The answer is simple, you can’t. So after the kids and wife are in bed, the rest of the night is spent watching as many basketball games as humanly possible. The games that we don’t watch live get taped and viewed the following day. This is just one aspect in our routine that has made us so successful in this industry.

After the first few weeks of the NBA season, we noticed immediately something different about the tempo of most games. This is where our NBA CONSPIRACY THEORY comes from.


When you think of conspiracy theories, the biggest that come to mind are the following. Did Neil Armstrong walk on the moon or was that staged someplace in Hollywood? Who really shot JFK? Was it Lee Harvey Oswald, or did our own government have something to do with it? How about Area 51 and the alien research that goes on there? Well ASA, Inc has uncovered something much bigger than anything that’s happened in the past, and if we disappear off the face of the planet tomorrow you’ll know we uncovered the truth in the NBA.

We are here to say that we think the NBA league office unofficially, behind closed doors mandated that teams try and play uptempo and score more points. Could David Stern and the rest of higher ups in the league office have finally come to the conclusion that the NBA just wasn’t as exciting anymore and needed more scoring? If so, could they pull this off without raising suspicion? Well ASA, Inc has uncovered the truth of the matter and exposed the NBA offices.

Have you noticed more scoring in the NBA to start this season? We have, and here are some numbers to support our conspiracy theory. Last season through the first few weeks of the regular season, the NBA had an 'over/under' record of 86-98, 47 percent. This year through nearly the same number of games, the trend has shifted favorably towards the 'over' with a 110-76 record, 59 percent.

When I was younger watching Dr. J, Magic, Larry, the Iceman etc… it was the norm for teams to score 100-plus points in most games. Then the "Bad Boy" Pistons had great success along with the defensive minded Bulls with M.J., and teams started focusing on defense instead of offense. The transition game went the way of the dinosaur. No more Michael Coopers filling the lane and getting a sweet no-look pass from Magic for an easy deuce.

In our opinion, the overall NBA image has faded in the past few years and fans aren’t as excited to watch games anymore. The remedy is more scoring! Every night so far this season, it seems that several teams are scoring 100 points or more on a consistent basis. In fact, so far this season teams have topped the 100-point barrier on 76 occasions through November 15th. Last year, the average points scored per game in the NBA was just 185 ppg. That number currently sits at just under 192 ppg this year. Ten days into this season, teams were averaging 95.3 points, compared to 90.4 through the first 10 days of last season. "I really think teams are just looking to run more," said Phoenix coach Mike D'Antoni, "and not just us."

Five teams (Phoenix, Dallas, Seattle, Utah and Milwaukee) are averaging 100 points a game or better, compared to two last season (Dallas and Sacramento).

A look at last year’s Finals, and we see good reason for this change in the NBA. In three of the five-game series between the Lakers and Pistons, the two teams failed to score more than 169 combined points. In the Eastern Conference Finals between the Pacers and Pistons we saw point totals of just 152, 139, 163, 151 and 134. These numbers are not good for TV ratings or the league in general. Let’s face it, when you break it down professional sports aren’t a sport so much as it’s a business and the bottom line is what matters most. If fans aren’t in the seats or tuned into the television, the league doesn’t exist.

Let’s make this comparison to strengthen our opinion. It’s early in the season, but this year the Pistons and Pacers are allowing an average of 97 ppg. Last year, these two clubs finished second and third in points allowed per game at 84 ppg and 85 ppg. This year, combined, they have a 10-4 'over' record. It just so happens that these two clubs meet on Friday night in Detroit. The total on this game is 179. When Indiana and Detroit played each other last year, the average posted totals on their games was 165.2. In ten games last year, they had eight posted totals in the 160’s, one in the 150’s and one in the 170’s. This adjustment would lead us to believe the oddsmakers are catching on to our conspiracy theory.

All kidding aside, we hope the NBA continues to play at the pace it has been to start this season as the overall game is much more entertaining. In our opinion, the NBA players are the greatest athletes on the face of the earth and watching them play half-court basketball is not what James Naismith had in mind.


posted by pc7588

Nov. 19 2004 1:27pm

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