The NBA doesn’t know its audience.

So I guess we’re just going to keep on pretending it never happened. Well, not me. Not anymore. I was there on Christmas day, watching the NBA season tipoff on ABC and ESPN. I’ll admit it, I saw what happened. And it’s high time somebody said something about it.

Now, it’s understandable if you don’t know what I’m talking about. I’ll assume you spent your entire Christmas day sharing time with family and reading SpreeGoogs, not watching basketball. After all, The Rocky Paradox was published that day, and you’d have to be crazy not to have spent your Christmas reading and re-reading it, because that’s how you appreciate great literature. Believe me, I get it.

Or, maybe you were traumatized by what you saw. Maybe, after putting up with the emotional ordeal of the NBA lockout and the anxiety of potentially not having a season this year, watching Justin Bieber take over your TV screen whilst tuning in for your first taste of NBA action this winter was too much for you. Maybe you just blocked it out. But, it did happen:

All we can do is admit it, talk about it and heal. But we are entitled to ask the NBA why. Why NBA, as we eagerly returned to watch the tipoff of this season’s action, after you cruelly teased us with the prospects of a lockout, did you put us through that? What man (of any age) wants to listen to Justin Bieber prior to every commercial break? Why did you have to put us through that torture when all we wanted was to witness the return of professional basketball?

Now admittedly, the NBA provided an upbeat, holiday-themed clip featuring one of the biggest names in music right now. And hey, Bieber himself seems like a cool enough kid, who just happens to have fallen into the situation of being a musical demigod to prepubescent girls all over the world. I’m not going to fault him for that or for the way his music sounds. In fact, collaborating with Busta Rhymes—even on a “remix” of Little Drummer Boy—gives him some cred. And yes, Bieber likes basketball and has been involved in NBA events before—plus he’s done SNL! But, why oh why on earth would the NBA think that any of its fans would want to be Bieber-fied before and after every commercial break on the opening day of the season? How many men ages 18-49 appreciate Justin Bieber? That’s the territory of 11-year old girls. Maybe David Stern thought that this promo would give grown men something to share with their 11-year old stepdaughters, thereby healing the fabric of America? [Note to Stern: there’s no way that could ever end well].

Bieber Basketball

Has anyone stopped to think that maybe the 2012 apocalypse has to do with Bieber turning 18 in two months?

I just don’t know what to conclude, except that the NBA must have zero idea who its audience is.

Now, as your humble blogger, it took a lot of courage to come forward and knowingly publish something with a less than perfect angle towards Justin Bieber on the internet. I’m quite sure that I’ll be forced to go into hiding shortly to avoid all of the death-threats and slander from 11-year old girls this post is sure to provoke. But don’t worry. Keep reading SpreeGoogs knowing it is possibly the last bastion of sports-journalism with integrity on the internet. No matter what happens, I won’t be far. Price-Daugherty may not be the hero SpreeGoogs deserves, but in these dark times I’m the hero SpreeGoogs needs. Trust.

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