Wednesday, 21 May 2008
Logo courtesy of NBA.
Basketball enthusiasts are busy rubbing their hands with glee as the world's most popular basketball league NBA gets to its final stages as they enter the Conference Finals ( for the uneducated, there are 2 conferences:- East and West which are divided into divisions which number 6 namely; Atlantic ,Southeast,Central,Southwest,Northwest and Pacific.For further details, please check www.nba.com.
This year's Conference Finals are mouth-watering as they come. The best teams in the regular season which also doubles up as the one with the most Play-offs wins, Boston Celtics is pitted against the Detroit Pistons-one of the meanest defensive teams in the League and also a recent regular play-off team in the Eastern conference.
From the Western Conference, the L.A. Lakers have their modjo back with Kobe Bryant leading the charge with a team which has gelled quite well in the regular season and finishing second best overall.They play against defending champions San Antonio Spurs who had it rough in the semis but showed the pedigree for the play-offs.
This one will be a close call, but my bet is that the Finals has Detroit Pistons playing L.A. Lakers and the Lakers winning it. But then again, I'm just a pundit.
As things wind up on the NBA side, back here the season has gotten underway and teams have made quite a number of changes in their personnel. Going by what ought to be trades in the NBA, some teams have lost crucial players while others have beefed up their squads substantially. As seen in last season's League, the institutional teams such as Strathmore University,University of Nairobi better known as Terrorists, and USIU also known as Tigers, have shown their intentions to challenge regular play-off teams such as KCB,Co-op Bank and KPA.
The newly elected officials have not shown any significnat changes to the game yet. Maybe they are trying out some new ideas which will be coming in later this year. But as for now, we have to be content with a dull and nondescript league. I was amused the other day to show up at the more regular venue Nyayo Gymnasium only to find the place secured with ballot boxes and papers for last year's General Election. Can't the ECK or the relevant bodies find a more secure place to store them ? Why do they have to cut the game and our proximity for such dubious reasons ?
This shows the need though for Kenya Basketball Federation to develop or secure better and more basketball venues. Most colleges have up-to standard courts but then again why can't they partner with local authorities to develop these ?