I know, I know... it's nowhere near as catchy or cleveras the NFL = No Fun League. But after (finally) seeing the semi-controversial technical and ejection of Grant Hill from the Raptors/Suns game, I'm beginning to worry about my beloved league.
I follow other sports, but not as religiously as the NBA. I've been a fan since early childhood, and part of the reason I fell in love with it was the fact I could see the players -- really see them. They're not hiding under padding, they don't look as monumentally bored as baseball players. They are active, they're emotional, they're human. However, the NBA is in danger of stripping the human side of the players completely away from the league if they continue down the path they've been headed on with these kind of technical foul calls.
I was worried when I read about the revised technical guidelines over the summer, and wondered how much it was going to affect the game. After seeing junk like Hill's ejection (which prematurely ended what could have become an epic butt-slapping competition between him and Evans) I'm even more worried than I was when I initially read about this.
This whole idea of "behavior modification" is an offshoot from the league's crackdown on players' unique personalities after Allen Iverson's jump in popularity. Iverson was too threatening to the league's beloved affluent, primarily white lower-concourse and courtside fanbase, so they put rules in place to seemingly keep the audience comfortable. From that has sprung even more ridiculousness in a misguided attempt to choke all personality from the players... without realizing that the personalities of the players is what keeps a lot of fans interested.
I've got no problem with officials telling players that complain after every single foul call against them (Bryant, Duncan... I hate to say it, but Nash at times as well) to chill out with a well-timed T. But T's over this kind of thing? T's over expressing a non-threatening but physical reaction to a foul call (a la Stoudemire)? T's for actually caring about the game? That, at least to me, spells danger for the league. By punishing the more colorful characters on the court, they're getting rid of the character of the league itself.