NBA In-Season Tournament Update

The In-Season Tournament has fully descended upon us and has added some life into an otherwise standard beginning of the NBA season. The group stage has officially concluded leaving an exciting set of teams for the knockout stages. But what can the NBA learn from this first set of games and what are everyone’s thoughts?

Starting with the negatives there has been a lot to say about the new courts each team is playing on. The bright colors have made it difficult for people to see and even if they are not visually impairing some are just plain ugly. There has also been talk of lack of motivation for teams to compete as the price is only $500,000 for each player. These are not entirely unfounded as title favorites such as Nuggets and Timberwolves have not proceeded to the knockout stage but I believe that it is not as big of a problem as some are making it out to be.

What the tournament has brought us is high scoring games that have allowed stars to shine. Players like Tyrese Haliburton and Donovan Mitchell have had high scoring games amongst other stars and teams have been encouraged to play to the last minute due to the group stage’s point differential system. That last point has caused some controversy but is a breath of fresh air in blowout losses.

Coming up very soon are the quarter stages on December 4th and 5th with semi-finals being played on December 7th. Teams such as the Lakers, Pelicans, Knicks, and our very own Celtics are all playing for a chance to eventually head to the finals. Despite all the challenges and criticism faced so far the tournament has brought more discourse into a time of the season that is usually fairly quiet. All signs are pointing to an excellent first final for this new tournament which will be played December 9th in Las Vegas.

Update: On Monday, December 4, the Celtics got knocked out against the Pacers with the score of 122-112.

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