March through June is the most exciting period of time in the world of sports. There is no other way to put it. The ever flowing stream of basketball that is provided is refreshing to bathe in for hoops junkies such as myself. In the beginning of March, you have college basketball and their conference tournaments. At the middle and tail-end of the month, you have the glorious NCAA Tournament and the near conclusion of the NBA regular season as the NBA Playoffs dawn upon us.
The NCAA Tournament for many fans is an evaluation period. It's a chance for those who casually skimmed through highlights, box scores and other sources of information during the college season, to truly engage themselves in the viewing of some promising stars. Some college players may be destined to change the fortunes of bottom feeding NBA teams, others may simply become a stellar player hoping to secure a position in someone's rotation. But for many of these kids, their dream of gracing an NBA floor may stop here. The idea of dueling with the Kobe Bryant's, LeBron James' and Kevin Durant's of the world are terminated as their tenure at their respective colleges is soon to be complete.
This is what makes the NCAA Tournament such a joy to watch. The heart, intensity, grit and dedication these kids play with is truly inspiring. It's what basketball is all about. One last chance for a cohesive unit to generate monumental buzz for their institution. One last opportunity to establish some incredible memories that will never dash from their heart, mind, spirit or soul. Factor all of these things in, and it produces some fantastic basketball games. Highly entertaining, thoroughly emotional and hotly contested match ups makes "March Madness" such an intriguing spectacle.
Certain teams were refused the glitz and glamor that big named schools such as Duke, Kansas and Kentucky command. These teams are what add a magic allure to the NCAA Tournament, as ball clubs such as Mercer and Dayton have an opportunity to showcase their talents. They finally have that opening to put on full display for the world why they are deserving to be in this tournament. Teams such as these who define the odds make bracket busting an enjoyable notion, as their victories manufacture fantastic memories that will forever be instilled in not only the minds of these young players, their coaches and their fan base, but of basketball fans country wide. These "cinderella teams"as they are often referred to as, add a spice and flavor to the tournament that makes it such an incredible event. The aspect of unpredictability makes "March Madness" such a great time. The tournament isn't crippled by top heavy teams, boasting numerous superstars. All that matters is one game. One moment to leap up in triumph, or collapse in defeat and misery.
In early April, the national championship game for this tournament rolls around, and a collegiate champion is crowned. The exhausting journey that is the NCAA Tournament concludes, and all attention goes to the big dogs. The NBAers. In early April, NBA teams are jockeying for playoff positioning which produces some of the best games of the season. Throughout the season, many complain of lulls teams go through. Periods of time where teams seem interested and have their mind fully fixated on the playoffs. Some teams in early April elect to preserve their mind and body, in preparation for the war that is the NBA Playoffs.
Playing against the same team over a possible period of 7 games becomes annoying. Emotions start to fester up, venom starts to spew and blood starts to boil. Rivalries are then etched in stone, and classic match ups are born. While others may breakdown physically, some propel them
selves to heights others thought weren't possible with mental fortitude. Legends are established in the NBA Playoffs. Virtuoso performances are pumped out by those refusing to lie down and die, having their fate decided by the opposition. Legacies are heightened, some diminished. Whatever the case is, us fans sit discussing, blogging and tormenting some players via social media.
Yes, March until June is truly the most wonderful time of the year. A continuous display of basketball and all it's beauty. Fierce and devoted teams looking to promote themselves to the status of champion. Watching these squads attempt to get there is what's so remarkable, as some titans may folly and the meek may surprisingly prosper. Whatever the case is, sit back and immerse yourself in all of this basketball. And as the weather gets warmer, and the days get longer, don't be afraid to venture outside and run a couple games with some buddies. The highlight plays may be omitted, but the concept is all the same. Enjoy the game of basketball with an devoted mindset, and some fantastic memories can be produced. To some it's just a game, but for hoops junkies like myself its more than a game. The same is said in reference to the college and NBA teams looking to hunt down an NBA championship. The results may not always be pretty, but as always it should be appreciated.
Who do you think will win the NCAA Tournament? Who do you think will claim the NBA championship? Do you have any sleeper NBA Playoff teams? Share your thoughts and opinions with me on twitter @wcboyer24, and as always continue to support The Basketball Society.