The great NBA players of the past are among the most celebrated athletes in professional sports, but it looks like Adam Silver just added a bit of perspective to these legends’ accomplishments: After watching some old NBA highlights, the commissioner has added an asterisk next to every record that was broken before 1978, because the players honestly looked like dogshit.
Yup, sounds about right. Pretty easy to see where Adam Silver’s coming from on this one.
The fourth-year league commissioner, who had finally gotten around to watching some of the NBA’s old black-and-white game reels earlier this week, was reportedly so unimpressed by the players’ lanky physical builds and slow-ass style of play that he immediately made the record books reflect how the game was pretty much a joke back then. At a press conference announcing the decision, Silver explained that while he probably could have lived with one or two shitty aspects of the old NBA, like how players only ever dribbled with their right hand or how the average height in each game was, like, 5 feet, 11 inches, there are ultimately too many reasons why the old records are kind of bullshit to simply ignore.
“After watching hours of game footage showcasing Pete Maravich, Bill Russell, and other basketball forefathers, it’s become clear that they were honestly just slow and terrible, and that there’s no way you can compare the old statistics to today’s without the asterisks,” Silver said. “Fans claim that no one else will ever average a triple-double like Oscar Robertson did in the entire 1961-1962 season, but come on, even a shit player from today like Dion Waiters would school Oscar’s ass up and down the court.”
“The NBA has a long, rich history, so it’s no surprise that many of our still-standing records were broken during a long-ago era when every player ran the floor like a toddler at a barbecue,” the commissioner continued, adding that Wilt Chamberlain’s cartoonish 55-rebound game only happened because everyone else on the court looked like a scarecrow in shorts. “But it’s only right that we add perspective to those old numbers.”
Silver went on to say that comparing today’s records to those from before 1978, an era when the best players were also the coaches and sometimes went off to war for, like, six years before coming back, is simply misleading without the asterisks. Whether the commissioner was drawing on Pistol Pete’s scoring title, who he insisted couldn’t average more than five points per game in his nephew’s CYO league today, or was explaining how Elvin Hayes’ 16,279 career rebounds were mostly bullshit because half the league back then was literal full-time plumbers, Silver drove home that the asterisks are crucial in making the old, inflated stats make sense in light of today’s NBA.
Yep, no arguments here. It may sound like a big league shake-up, but it’d be pretty tough to disagree with the commish on this move.
Wow. While Silver’s outlook certainly marks a break from how the league has looked at its records in the past, you’d be hard-pressed to find a hole in his reasoning. At the end of the day, with the old athletes being as unbearably shitty as they were, adding the asterisks is really a no-brainer.