Always looking for new forms of business, and inspired by the current NBA playoffs, we wonder if there is an emerging market of armor for basketball players. There have already been hints that a demand exists. Notice those cute masks that players wear when they break their noses. In a game that celebrates increasing roughness, with coaches and players vowing to be more “physical” than their opponents, it seems only a matter of time when basketball players will look more like football and hockey players than the swishy-dressed of today.
Not that we think this is a good thing; just practical and perhaps a business opportunity. After all, is it not business that has professional basketball teams playing obscenely long schedules, beginning in the early fall and lasting well into June? As we noted not too long ago, basketball is likely to be the first sport to have a new season begin before the old one ends. But back to sex and violence.
Chicago’s best player got hurt with the playoffs barely underway. The Miami Heat has one of its Big Three out with an injury, and other players constantly nursing something or other, missing games and playing hurt. This in a game which James Naismith invented in 1891 to be a safe, indoor sport to keep the lads active in the cold northern winters. Today, to protect the players we need armor.
Helmets, of course, should be first, complete with face masks and perhaps decorative Prussian spikes on top. That would one-up football and hockey and perhaps cut down on the concussion lawsuits that are all the rage among former football players, although there could be a danger of puncture wounds to the groin as players lower their bodies to charge through defenders, a very common tactic in today’s game. That would, of course, necessitate some form of body armor, and maybe shoulder pads. This would not be terribly heavy, less than 25 pounds, and probably only reduce the average player’s standing jump by a foot. Some players already wear knee braces, and knee pads have been around for years, although somewhat out of fashion because you can’t see them due to length of the gowns that are the current mode.
If these ideas seem extreme, keep in mind that there was a time when football players did not wear helmets, and concussions, oddly enough, were not so common. Ditto hockey. Back when we cut out photos of hockey players from Sportmagazine to decorate our bedroom walls, none of the great stars wore headgear. It was not considered manly. So now we press on, designing the helmets, blackjacks and other garments which will be quickly bought up by the poor souls who support this perversion of a once-great game. Our company has already cornered the market on helmet spikes. You guys can get the rest.