I hear a lot of complaining these days about the margins of defeat in the NBA playoffs and how what seems like an inevitable Cavs-Warriors final is bad for the league.
I couldn't disagree more.
Where others see another Cavs-Warriors matchup as a forgone conclusion they can't wait to get started, I see it as a rare treat that's almost as much fun to anticipate as it will be to watch.
To those who think Cleveland and Golden State's dominance of their respective conferences is boring, I say, "Consider yourself lucky that you're getting to watch something that's never happened before."
The Celtics and Lakers dynasties never treated us to three straight Finals. Nor did Jordan's Bulls find a worthy opponent in the West three years in a row.
Let me remind those who think it's boring that the Warriors and Cavs will meet again that this Series, should it happen, will be different than the previous two, which were distinctly different from each other.
Two years ago, LeBron took on the Warriors single-handed when both Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love were injured.
Last season, James had a full compliment of complimentary players and made NBA history by leading a team back from a 3-1 Finals deficit for the first time ever.
This time, the Warriors will have a decidedly different look with Kevin Durant in the lineup, and we don't know if they'll have head coach Steve Kerr on the bench.
He's been missing lately, battling health issues from a bad back surgery. Who might stand in for Kerr on the Warriors' sideline?
You might have heard of him, Cavs fans. Your old friend Mike Brown is Golden State's interim coach. Yes, the same Mike Brown who has been fired as Cleveland's head coach not just once, but twice...first to hopefully keep LeBron from leaving, and then to hopefully induce LeBron to return.
A boring series is one that has no fresh story lines. The Cavs and Warriors have so many different angles, not to mention so much leftover hostility from the past two years, that it's bound to be a ratings bonanza.
Yes, the critics say, but what about how boring the playoffs have been leading up to now. Both Cleveland and Golden State have gone 8-0, with back-to-back series sweeps in the first- and second-rounds.
It's clear, the complainers say, that no one in either conference is the equal of the Cavs and Warriors.
To that I say, so what?
No one bemoans the boredom of the MIchael Jordan era when he won six titles in the six consecutive seasons he played. No, that was great theater because it was the great MJ, consistently adding to his legacy.
If you want the definition of boring, it was Jordan's Bulls winning those championships 6 times in 8 years against five different opponents, without ever facing a Game 7 even once.
Step right up, fellas, and let Michael strip you of your dignity.
Wouldn't it have been better if someone in the West had been the equal of the Bulls, with residual vitriole like exists between Draymond Green and LeBron, Steph and Kyrie, Klay Thompson and LeBron?
It's strange, no one gets tired of watching greatness in other realms of entertainment. There are people who've been to 50 or more concerts by the same band, people who follow Jimmy Buffett, the Rolling Stones, the Grateful Dead all over the country.
Is the music different every concert?
Do those fans show up only for the headliner every concert?
No. They're there as soon as the opening acts play, for fear they might miss the next-big-thing.
If that's all the first three rounds of the playoffs are, opening acts for the Cavs and Warriors, so what? Are you not entertained by the Celtics Isaiah Thomas scoring 53 points, but the bad blood between Kelly Olynyk and Kelly Oubre. Is it not fun to watch the San Antonio Spurs shake off an injury to Tony Parker and perhaps prove all the doubters wrong who said their dynasty was finally over?
If you believe it's boring to watch three weeks of the NBA playoffs, and have almost three more weeks still to endure before the Finals begin on June 1, I feel bad for you.
You must never watch the opening credits for a movie and understand how those scenes fit into the plot.
You must never order an appetizer to whet your palette for the main course to come.
You must never have heard, and certainly don't believe, in the concept of delayed gratification, or understand the wisdom in that old saying, "Good things come to those who wait."
Sure, we're only halfway through the post-season waiting period for Cavs-Warriors, Part III.
I'm not in any great hurry to get there, because for me, the anticipation is half the fun.