(NYT) - The Milwaukee Bucks held the league’s best record (53-12) when the N.B.A. abruptly ended its season on March 11. Don’t expect them to be rewarded for it in any meaningful way if the league is ultimately forced to cancel the rest of the season.
Although the N.B.A. has adopted an anything-goes mentality in fielding proposals for new ideas — “We’re in listening mode right now,” Silver said — some sort of vote would be required to name a champion without a postseason. You can safely assume (nothing personal, Milwaukee) that no team is going to be crowned a champion that way.
While I think we can all agree that any sort of playoffs/tournament/whatever is the preferred method when it comes to determining a champion for the 2019-20 season, part of me wants the chaos of this potential vote. There is no doubt in my mind someone would get screwed and honestly this season has been so crazy why not have an even crazier ending. Think of all the potential angles we could have here. Let's say this vote is only made by the owners. What if you're an owner that is hoping to land Giannis in 2021 and you think that the longer he goes without a title in MIL the more likely he is to leave? No way you're voting for the Bucks. What are the chances every small market owner led by the Pelicans convinces every small market team to vote against the Lakers simply out of spite? I can get behind that.
I feel like this could be like politics when they are trying to pass a bill or whatever. At least I think that's how it works based on my watching House Of Cards and West Wing. What if an owner is willing to sell off picks/players in order for another owner's vote? Little you scratch my back I scratch yours situation. Maybe there's a player a certain team wants in the draft but needs to move up a spot or two. Well all it'll cost you is a Champion vote. Admit it, that's intriguing.
I know Stein is saying we can safely assume this won't happen, but we live in weird times. This type of vote is every bit as possible as any of the other options being thrown around so I feel like it's way too early to just completely shut it down. Let's say only the top 8 from each conference are eligible for this vote and someone like the Magic do the best job of buying votes so they become the champion. That would be insane yet absolutely hilarious. They hang that banner with pride without question.
So while this is beyond a pipe dream, I sneaky don't hate this idea. Give me the chaos and make it a rule that all the votes have to be publicized just like in politics. I see no reason why this shouldn't be on the table unless in the end the Celtics get boned out of a potential title in which this vote will be immediately discredited.