It’s been nearly two months since the increasingly unpopular NBA stumbled to the end of the 2020 season, but its spineless commissioner and a reliably left-wing sports-writer are still making excuses for America tuning out the social justice-crazy league. Commissioner Adam Silver said in a GQ interview that there is zero data for claims by President Donald Trump and Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) that Black Lives Matter ties torpedoed NBA ratings.
President Trump and Sen. Cruz said the NBA had only itself to blame for pathetic TV ratings during the NBA Finals. Sen. Cruz said the league "decided to insult half of its fans" with its allegiance to BLM, and the president cited "zero interest" in the NBA Finals.
"I could bang the table all day long and say, 'No, our support of Black Lives Matter, that is a social justice movement in which 25 million people took to the streets in the United States to support.’"
Uh, yeah, but those lawless looters and arsonists weren’t watching rich, privileged social justice warriors run up and down the court in televised NBA games. Neither were many law-abiding citizens. Viewership for this year’s NBA Finals crashed to an astounding 51 percent decline compared to last year’s finals, which were devoid of BLM imagery.
"Yet others have chosen to label Black Lives Matter as an anti-American Marxist organization,” Silver acknowledged. “And I recognize because that's written on our floor, we have to own that point of view as well."
Silver didn’t own the Marxist BLM dominating the NBA season very well, remarking: “Now, some people might suggest that the words Black Lives Matter are causing massive amounts of people to tune out the NBA. There's absolutely no data to support that."
In a bizarre application of math, Silver tried to make a case that some people have become further engaged with the league. These people, he said, respect the athletes’ right to speak out on social justice issues. Just where these folks were and what they were doing when the NBA games were televised is an unsolved mystery.
Cancian defended the woke NBA as a league that emerged as one of the loudest voices calling for an end to racial discrimination and police brutality after the George Floyd and Jacob Blake incidents.
“The league was at the forefront of social justice campaigns and threw its support behind the BLM movement—although Silver has repeatedly made clear the league supported the movement's broader values, rather than the organization directly,” Cancian wrote.
Good luck with that. Millions of basketball fans didn’t buy it, voting against the NBA with their TV clickers. But Cancian won’t support the argument that they were tuning out of social justice.
The NBA viewing disaster came with several Cancian caveats, including the COVID-19 pandemic putting the league up against pro football and baseball broadcasts. But if the NBA’s social justice mania was so popular, it would have fared better in competition against rival sports.
The NFL experienced a 13-percent ratings decline in its first five weeks – a drop in the bucket compared to the NBA’s kamikaze nosedive. During the first five nights of this year’s NBA Finals, Fox News, CNN and MSNBC saw their audiences surge, said Cancian. Precisely: people just weren’t interested in LeBron James, et al, bashing America.
Silver further deflected the league’s plummeting public perception with a laughable excuse about how 90 percent of its players are now registered to vote, and 23 teams turned their arenas into voting centers.
Wow! As far as excuses go, these diversions from reality are first-rate!