So did you hear about the Cleveland Cavaliers winning the lottery last night? Yeah, it was totally rigged. Stern thinks that the league will generate more money if Cleveland becomes competitive again and starts a fierce rivalry with LeBron and South Beach, so he set those little ping pong balls so it'd come out with the Cavs.
Here's another one: the Miami superteam has been so successful drawing crowds and selling merchandise that greedy old bastard Stern wants to start another one. Of course New Jersey was going to win the lottery, because now they are able to trade for Howard, keep Deron Williams, and still hang onto some of the pieces they have. That "lottery" was decided weeks ago, and now the NBA can reap the benefits. Rigged!
Neither of those happened. The New Orleans Hornets won the first pick of the draft last night, with a 13.7% chance of it before the draft. And when I start up the internet this afternoon, the first story I see on Yahoo! is titled, "Conspiracy Talk Flares after NBA Draft Lottery".
Are you kidding? Are you seriously kidding me right now?
Sure, I suppose the NBA "wanted" New Orleans to win the lottery. They still have some amount of control over the organization from when they owned the team, despite Tom Benson's purchase last April. And Stern did deny the Chris Paul trade to the Lakers that would have netted them Gasol and Odom (although we all saw how Odom turned out and is Gasol really a significant over Eric Gordon, who they got when they dealt CP3 to the Clippers).
But just a stout of a case can be made for the NBA wanting Cleveland to win it, or New Jersey. I haven't even mentioned the worst team in the league, Charlotte, who happens to be owned by the greatest basketball player of all time. Don't you think that could have just a little bit of an effect on what Stern is clearly scripting for the league? I can see the commercials and the taglines already.
There's four of the thirteen teams with a shot at the number one pick in the draft. Charlotte, with a 25% chance, the Cavs at 13.8%, New Jersey with a 7.5%, and the Hornets' 13.7%. Add that all up, and it's a 60% chance that one of those teams win the lotto. If Stern really wanted to rig it, he would have to pick a team that he didn't have any apparent reason to root for them to get the first pick, because three out of five times, it was going to be one of those four teams.
Supposedly, the reason the lottery would even be rigged to start with is because of the money. Ironic, seeing how the accusation is made in an article designed to get hits and views due to the sensationalistic nature.
So go ahead, tell me the lottery was totally rigged. I'll reply, in the words of the great Antoine Dodson, "you are really dumb, for real." I'm not joking -- I actually want to say this to someone, so please come tell me this. Until then, let's all enjoy the fact that while Stern isn't exactly doing a lights-out job, he hasn't scripted everything out WWE style, and New Orleans won the lottery because, well, it's a lottery. Someone's got to do it.