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Problems With All-Star Games

There are several problems with the NBA All-Star Games. Hell, there are issues with all of the all-star events in America’s major leagues.

I’ll go down the line and offer my take on solutions. Some are easy fixes, and some will take a little more work. But at worst, they’re entertaining!

NBA All-Star Games

Yao and Michael Jordan, NBA All-Star GamesBig problem(s): Fans have full say on starters (and NBA fans seem to be idiots). Stars don’t participate in the dunk contest.

Solution(s): Give fans only a partial percentage of the vote for starters, like the NFL does. Remember: Fans voted Kobe Bryant in as a starter in 1998, a year he wasn’t even starting for the Lakers! Also, because the world gets a say, Yao Ming was a starter damn near every year of his career because China stuffed the ballots — this during the days when Shaquille O’Neal was the dominant big man in the league.

As for the dunk contest, the league needs to force at least two “superstars” to compete. Hell, if David Stern can fix the lottery, veto trades or make it so that the Lakers beat the Kings, he can do this.

MLB All-Star Games

Big problem(s): Winner gets home-field advantage in the World Series. Some guys get snubbed because every team must be represented.

Solution(s): Kill the World Series rule — this is a freakin’ exhibition event! It’s supposed to be fun. You think some dude on this year’s Cubs or Twins teams gives a shit if their league wins? Ain’t like they’re going to the Fall Classic. Also, kill the participation rule. If you play for a crappy team, unless your numbers truly merit consideration, you can watch at home with the rest of us common folk!

NFL Pro Bowls

NFL Pro Bowl, All-Star Games

Big problem(s): Super Bowl players aren’t eligible. Defenses can’t blitz. Most players don’t seem to care.

Solution(s): Move game back to the week after the Super Bowl, so that those guys can play in it. Let the defenses play, this ain’t powder puff! Make the winners’ share a larger percentage. Currently, winners get double what losers get (in 2010, the AFC got $45,000, the NFC $22,500). Make that cut 80%-20% rather than 66.7%-33.3% and you may see players get at it a little harder.

NHL All-Star Games

Big problem(s): They keep changing the format.

Solution(s): I admit that I like the Fantasy Draft idea they’ve used the past few years. If they want to stick to that, cool. But don’t keep altering the format. For most years, it was West vs. East (or Campbell vs. Wales, which is the same thing). They also did North American Stars vs. World Stars for a few years recently. I’m all for innovation, but, please, pick a format and stick with it already!

MLS All-Star Games

Big problem(s): Like the NHL, there has been a lack of consistency.

Solution(s): Since 2005, the game has been the MLS’s best against a foreign team. If the MLS is insistent on having its stars play against the best in the world, taking the pitch against teams like Chivas Guadalajara and lower-rung English Premier League squads Fulham and Everton isn’t the answer. Instead, ask stars across the world to unite and play each year.

The point is to put on a show for the fans. We know the MLS stars should get killed by the world’s best 99 times out of 100, but the possibility of that one time, they would get asses in the seats, assuming the star power isn’t enough. I’d pay to see MLS stars face Messi, Ronaldo, Rooney, Drogba, Kaka, etc.

There you have it, sports fans. I’m sure all of you have some ideas about all-star games as well, maybe ones worlds better than what I’ve come up with. These games are supposed to be for us, right? Maybe it’s time we let our voices be heard.

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5 Comments on “Problems With All-Star Games

  1. yetivedder
    June 21, 2012

    I also like fantasy drafts for every sport! BUT…
    Get rid of all all-star games and just make simple challenges like the old school QB Challenges, but do it with all positions… Skill challenges in the NFL would be sweet!!!.. Homerun derby, throwing accuracy tests, speed challenges, fielding stuff in MLB. Dunks, 3 point, and a 2 on 2 tourney in NBA. Hockey keep the same… Soccer no one cares!

  2. Pro Bowl is a big joke. Blogged about it myself after the last fiasco. I like your suggestins to improve it.

  3. mommyhatesme
    February 17, 2013

    Skills competitions would be far superior and decrease chance of player injury as well. The NFL and NHL used to do them and they were fun to watch.

    For the other sports:
    MLB – Speed around the bases, targeted hitting, fastest pitch, furthest/fastest fielding throws
    NBA – 1v1 or 2v2 tournaments because I’d rather watch players shoot FT’s than jump over more random objects and miss dunks
    MLS – as it improves they need to move away from the current model that just screams “our best is only as good as everyone elses 3rd tier”. 5v5 indoor sized field would be fun.

  4. Gonos
    February 17, 2013

    Yeah, I think MLB is missing out on some fun here. Rather than have a pitcher throw his arm out in a “fastest pitch” contest, I like the idea of precision scoring, sort of like the snipers in the hockey All-Star game that have to hit discs in the goal. And you could have a curve ball spot, where the ball has to go over a bar, under another bar, and then hit a disc that’s like a foot or so lower.

  5. blucowboy
    February 17, 2013

    Yeti is on it. The games suck. I have no intention of watching the NBA All-star game, but I did watch the skills competition. 3-point contest in exhilarating.

    The most glaring issue with the slam dunk contest is the lack of stars, but what I can’t get over is that these idiots have unlimited attempts in 90 seconds. Sweet windmill bro, but I can’t ignore your 13% success rate.

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