We are approaching the NBA finals inside the NBA bubble. And the road to the postseason has been an interesting one. This playoff has undoubtedly been the most eventful of all seasons. For multiple reasons: protests, COVID-19, scandals and that’s not even mentioning basketball. As far as on the court, things have been nothing short of unpredictable.
The number 1 seed in the east has been eliminated in the second round. Denver has come back from 3-1 deficits in back-to-back series. The former NBA champs in the Toronto Raptors were knocked off. And new rising stars have been emerging from the woodworks. Not to mention surprises such as the TrailBlazers, Thunder, and Mavericks making noise before getting knocked out.
But exactly how has the NBA bubble changed how the playoffs are being played?
No Crowd = No Momentum
If you're a true NBA fan you know how important home-court advantage is. Well this year in the NBA bubble, that is nonexistent. A team like Milwaukee would’ve thrived off of getting the home-court feel. Unfortunately, they don’t get the same momentum from fans when a big dunk by the Greek Freak happens. So the number of scoring runs for a team has been cut down. Forcing a lot more closer games.
Young guys such as Tyler Herro, Jamal Murray, and Duncan Robinson to name a few have it good. They don’t have to deal with thousands of fans booing them or heckling them from every mistake. Now, these guys can just ball with no hassles. This allows more young players to be comfortable because of the lack of a crowd. It’s easier to hit free throws with just your family in the stands than with screams of thousands behind the backboard.
Games Every Other Day Shows A lot
Since the playoffs started games have been played every other day to hurry the season. The AAU style of play has been positive for some players. Younger players have been able to get into a groove. Once they have a bad game, they don’t have to hear it from Twitter because the next game is two nights away. So the short term memory that’s needed can play into the hands of young guys.
With these back-to-back games, we are seeing more of the deeper teams win. Ball clubs like Los Angeles, Miami, and Denver have proved themselves. That’s due partly to the depth these teams possess. Coaches are able to go deeper into their bench as the series continues. Leaving the teams with only 1-2 main scorers on the team to struggle.
Limited Distractions Are Making Players Focus In
Being in the bubble away from their families and friends has forced players to zone in. However, that doesn’t stop a few mishaps happen for some players. But for the most part, star players haven’t posted on social media as much. They’ve been closer to their teams as they stay in the same resorts. Not to mention the games back to back have made for better chemistry for some teams.
Now that the bubble has only allowed people close to players to enter so it will also help. Outside distractions on social media or toxic environments have been somewhat limited.
Image Via The Undefeated