Well, even though they can stay on pretty late, I can’t get me enough of the NBA playoffs. Those guys are simply amazing. Everyone knows about LeBron and Kevin Durant but there are other very cool stories as well. Like Danny Green on San Antonio. Come the playoffs last year and this year, the guy’s on fire! Setting all kinds of records with tons of 3-pointers. But here’s the cool part. He didn’t even START in college. That’s right; he was sixth man at UNC. I remember because I live only about 5 miles from the UNC campus. So a guy who couldn’t be in the top five on his team in college is now going berserk from downtown (3-pt land) in the pros. That shows you sure shouldn’t ever give up, even if you can’t make the first string.
Anyway I decided to look up some history of the NBA. Don’t know why, but I looked up 1956. Oh, that was an interesting year. The Celtics beat the Hawks for the championship. The St. Louis Hawks! Hey, most of the teams we know now didn’t even exist back then. Here were the divisions with all their teams:
New York Knicks
St. Louis Hawks
Fort Wayne Pistons
That’s right! There were only 8 teams in all and get this: 6 of them got to go to the playoffs. Only two were left out. Huh?? And they had teams in Syracuse, Fort Wayne, and Rochester! Not exactly huge cities nowadays. But I can’t believe they were that big even back then. I guess it shows there wasn’t a ton of interest in having an NBA team in your town. Too bad I wasn’t around. I could have started up a team no problem and no doubt made some nice coin over the years.
Anyway, then I decided to look up some salaries from back then. I mean right now, Kobe Bryant makes $30 million a year. And he didn’t even play this year. #2 is Dirk Nowitski at almost $23 million. #3 comes Amar’e Stoudemire, another guy who hardly played. (Where can I sign up for those jobs? I can’t play either and I’ll gladly take even half of that.) Even a low paid star — like Tim Duncan — gets $10 million. But back in 1956, Bob Cousy of the Celtics and Bob Pettit of the Hawks made the top salaries of $25,000 a year! Say what?? And yeah, I know about inflation, but that still wouldn’t come anywhere close to what even the lowest paid players on teams make now.
Man, there’s a lot out there I don’t know. Since I’m pretty sure I’ll never be a pro player in anything, maybe I should get more tuned into history. Seems pretty interesting.
Well, back to the playoffs. Go, San Antonio! I felt bad for them when they blew the finals against the Heat last year. Hey, give someone else a chance, LeBron.
From Your Dude with the ‘Tude,