BLOGTABLE: How to televise the All-Star Game draft?
NBA.com Global on Feb 22, 2018 08:02 AM
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 18: Russell Westbrook #0 and LeBron James #23 of Team LeBron shake hands against Team Curry during the NBA All-Star Game as a part of 2018 NBA All-Star Weekend at STAPLES Center on February 18, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)n
NBA commissioner Adam Silver says the next All-Star draft will likely be televised. To make for the best television, that draft should take place when, where and how?
* * *
David Aldridge: I'd do it on Saturday night, between the three-point contest and the Dunk contest (though I'd also reverse the order of the dunk contest and the three-point contest so the latter was the final event of the evening). Have LeBron James and Stephen Curry or whoever the captains are next year come out in their warmups and have the 22 other All-Stars along the sidelines or baseline. As each player is chosen, the captain has to explain why he picked the player or why he didn't pick another player (one question only, not both). The chosen player is then asked his reaction. As I wrote a few weeks ago in the Morning Tip, I'd also give fans an opportunity to text in their prediction for who the next player chosen will be.
Fans who pick the right player would automatically be entered into a drawing, with one winner chosen who'd receive four tickets and airfare to the following year's All-Star game. And on and on and on until "Mr. Irrelevant" -- the last All-Star -- goes to one of the teams by default. I would also add one "wild card" that could be used by any chosen player during the draft, in which the player could -- verbally -- opt to PLAY FOR THE OTHER TEAM!! Can you imagine how much fun that would be?
Steve Aschburner: Ninety minutes before tipoff, center court, Spectrum Center in Charlotte. You want to go playground style, then do it the way it’s done on the playground: on the spot, immediately before playing. All the cameras would be in place to capture all the angles and reactions. Have two full sets of jerseys ready for players to don, according to squad. And hope the last man picked plays for the next couple hours with a huge chip on his shoulder, sparking highlights and even greatness. (If 90 minutes isn’t enough for the two All-Star coaches to prep their teams, hold this the night before as one of All-Star Saturday’s events. Then the teams could install a few plays during a morning walk-through.)
Tas Melas: On the court, before the game. Imagine the ratings! This format ensures all players are present and that the fires which are created by the picking order are burning their hottest. People will tune in, the guys’ competitive juices will be flowin’, and because Nike will have to produce each player’s jersey for both teams, the NBA can sell ‘error uniforms.’
Shaun Powell: No need to complicate this. Just put the captains on a remote feed, have them choose sides on a 30-minute "Inside The NBA" special, have Charles Barkley, Kenny Smith and Shaquille O'Neal poke fun or applaud the picks, and then give us what we want -- who's the last player(s) picked? Those players should receive some sort of award, maybe a lifetime pass from ever appearing on Shaqtin a Fool.
John Schuhmann: In the arena, as part of All-Star Saturday Night. The Saturday stuff went by pretty quickly this year, and you can add a half hour between the 3-point contest and the Dunk contest to run the draft. It doesn't need to be much of a production, just do it playground-style with the captains at center court, picking from the non-captains right there in front of them. It would be much better to do it with everyone there than with the two captains doing it over a video feed with no reactions from the other guys. It's also an opportunity for everybody to show off their off-court style, you can throw in a fan vote for Best Dressed that gets a guy some money for charity, and the last pick should get some sort of bonus, too.
Sekou Smith: I'm fine with the All-Star draft taking place in the 23 minutes just before tip off. We could replace those exhausting player introductions with the one thing that could really crank up the ratings. Send the captains to center court in Charlotte next year and line the All-Stars up on the baselines and do it the way we all have at one time or another and choose sides. I guarantee you no one will want to miss the spectacle of the who goes where.