Before we dive into the continued confidence you all seem to have in the Suns, let’s take a look at how fans are feeling about load management across the NBA.
The decision came to the fore last week when the Clippers opted to sit Kawhi Leonard for the first night of a back-to-back. It just so happened that the game was nationally televised on ESPN and pitted the championship favorite Clippers against Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Bucks. The contest was actually pretty entertaining even without Leonard, but many ESPN personalities brought out their pitchforks to defend their network.
That led to a broader national discussion about whether teams should cede to players and manage their health at the expense of fan enjoyment in the arena and on TV.
According to this week’s NBA FanPulse survey, most NBA fans aren’t all that bothered.
They don’t think the onus should be placed upon teams to clean up the mess for the NBA. That’s exactly where I fall.
Look, the best teams have been doing this for a long time. The Spurs started this whole dialogue (and ironically couldn’t make it work with Leonard) earlier this decade and helped extend their stars’ primes by several years.
The Raptors didn’t put Leonard on the floor for any back-to-backs last season and won the title even as Leonard was slightly bothered by the same knee injury that again started this debate with the Clippers.
Instead, FanPulsers mostly believed the NBA season should be longer so that teams felt less pressure to sit stars at all. Maybe getting rid of back-to-backs completely could help, but that would likely push the already eight-month-long NBA season to nearly the entire year.
In another response, 44 percent of FanPulsers said load management “is a shame, but I get it.”
If you want to get in on the debate, sign up here!
Back to the Suns. For the second straight week, an incredible 100 percent of respondents said they were confident in the direction of the franchise. With a 6-4 record, the opening of the practice facility and the strong play of Devin Booker, the momentum is strong.