BROOKLYN ZOO

       With the MERRY-GO-ROUND of NBA Free Agency taking place, the argument of FAIRNESS in team-building has resurfaced. Is it fair for some franchises to go out and build “unbeatable” teams?

 For years, this argument has been at the height of every MLB Free Agency; a battle of the “HAVES” versus the “HAVE NOTS”. Just recently, has it become a discussion that has been at the forefront of the NBA offseason, with the monumental 2010 Summer the Miami Heat were able to accomplish, obtaining LeBron James, Chris Bosh, and keeping Dwayne Wade. Miami and its superstars received much criticism for the moves, but were also able to achieve their ultimate goal a year later. Judging by what we have seen in Free Agency this summer, other teams seem to realize that it will take similar moves to win a Championship. But is it a fair game for every team?

 If you ask teams like the Brooklyn Nets, New York Knicks, or Los Angeles Lakers if what the Heat have done is fair, the answer would be “yes”. Each of these teams has made their own moves to create a power house in the league. Some attempts may have failed, but their ACTIONS in itself show that they want to play ball with Miami.

 In my COUCH SPORTS EXPERT opinion, creating “unbeatable” teams is FAIR GAME in any sport. In the NBA, especially, where teams have the right and ability to pursue whoever they choose. Who’s to say that any other team in the League could not have pulled off a blockbuster deal like the Miami Heat did a few years ago? It wasn’t about having more money or bargaining power. It was about being more savvy, and bold enough to attempt such a deal. And it worked!

 The same goes for this summer. For every top Free Agent, there is a private circle of 2-3 teams that we all presume have the only shot at landing them. But we have seen those presumptions completely destroyed by the acquisition of PG Steve Nash by the Los Angeles Lakers. A few weeks ago, we were led to believe that Nash’s choices were between the Raptors, Mavericks, or Knicks. If L.A. could jump in and steal him, so could’ve any other team with all of their Draft picks on hand. And the same could easily happen with Orlando Magic star Dwight Howard. What’s stopping a team like the Lakers from offering Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum, and whoever else for him? What’s stopping a team like Oklahoma City from offering Kendrick Perkins, Serg Ibaka, and draft picks to land Howard?

 The point being, any team can go out there and at least make an attempt to get out of the realm of being “MEDIOCRE”. Many of them just won’t try it. Instead, they would rather play the “fair game” of drafting a few hopefuls and picking up a star here or there.

 How bad do these teams want to win? And do they want to when NOW? Do they have the guts to completely change the dynamic of their franchise? And if so, can they make it work? The 2010-11 season showed that no team is unbeatable, regardless of how many stars they have. But you have to respect the try. Those of us who look at these moves in disgust are more upset, because OUR TEAM just won’t make the same moves. It may completely suck, but it’s not UNFAIR.

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