FanDuel - WFBC

March 03, 2003

According to former player Bimbo Coles, the Cleveland Cavaliers are tanking games: in order to increase their chances of getting the #1 overall draft choice (which will definitely be LeBron James).

posted by kickerofelves to basketball at 07:18 PM - 15 comments

It wouldn't be the first time if it was true. What I wonder is even if the organization as a whole may want to lose in order to get the first pick, and a coach can have a hand in it by playing bench guys and rookies and "tinkering" with his lineup, you just won't be able to convince any players to sandbag. Also, the Cavs are not assured of anything even with the worst record with the ping-pong ball set up. I'd be interested in seeing how many times the team with the worst record has in fact gotten the first pick under the current method.

posted by vito90 at 07:30 PM on March 03

Vito: the answer to your question is 'never', which is what make me doubt this story a bit.

posted by tieguy at 10:39 PM on March 03

Well, what do you expect when you have a system which rewards losing? My team, West Bromwich Albion, are about to be relegated into a lower division for finishing in the bottom three of the Premiership They are being relegated because they simply aren't good enough. It would be ridiculous if instead, they were allowed to sign Wayne Rooney.

posted by salmacis at 03:59 AM on March 04

I think I heard on ESPN that it hasn't happened since 1990. So maybe the Cavs should tank enough games to finish in the second/third spot!

posted by emoeby at 08:32 AM on March 04

salmacis, under such a system how do infuse new talent? It would seem that that system is too punishing. When I lived in Rome it seemed to me unfair that one bad year could force you to be dropped from Seria A. Just seems too unfair to the fans and the team owners.

posted by Bag Man at 06:39 PM on March 04

Signs to look for that your team is tanking.

posted by grum@work at 11:19 PM on March 04

This explains the Bengals.

posted by owillis at 11:57 PM on March 04

Except with the Bengals, even with a guaranteed 1st overall pick, can't get things right...

posted by swank6 at 02:03 AM on March 05

er... scratch the "with"

posted by swank6 at 02:03 AM on March 05

Maybe I'm cursed, since I support the Bengals as well... Bag Man: Sorry, I don't under stand your question.

posted by salmacis at 04:14 AM on March 05

Bag Man: Sorry, I don't under stand your question. Sorry if I was confusing. I just meant to say that I think the reassignment system that is often used in European soccer leagues is unfair. Having followed Roma and Seria I notice that same teams are always at the top (Inter, Juvi, etc.) and the same teams seem to float between Seria A and Seria B. I was merely wondering that if you don't have a mechanism to help bad teams get new talent how does a league promote equality? How do bad teams ever compete? I think it also hurts the fans too. Why root for a team that will be pushed down to minors? I understand that such a system is meant to promote incentives to win and try hard, but the consequences seem too draconian.

posted by Bag Man at 08:31 AM on March 05

Bag Man: That's a lotta questions, and I don't have time to answer them. Suffice to say, there is no concept of parity. Teams have different aims depending on their resources. For my team, staying in the Premiership would have been a success. Similarly, if you support Arsenal, success is winning the Premiership. For Tottenham or Everton, success at the moment would mean qualifying for the Champions League. Why root for a team that will be pushed down to minors? Because I'm not a gloryhunter, or one of those fans who will only support a team if it is doing well. Probably most people in England support a club which is not in the Premiership. For every team that gets relegated, a team gets promoted. No minor league team in America will ever experience the joy of promotion. It's a very fair system. Each team ends up exactly where it deserves to be.

posted by salmacis at 05:57 PM on March 05

Why root for a team that will be pushed down to minors? Because I'm not a gloryhunter, or one of those fans who will only support a team if it is doing well. I'm not a fair-weather fan, but rooting for a looser is not a lot of fun, In know, I'm a Cubs fan. Thankfull the Cubs have won their divison a few times (15 or so in all), I glad they at least have a shot each year. Probably most people in England support a club which is not in the Premiership. True in the US to some extent, the majority of sports teams are not "major league." No minor league team in America will ever experience the joy of promotion. I hope that that never occurs. Why? Because minor league teams are meant to farm talent for, not compete with, the big boys. It's a very fair system. Each team ends up exactly where it deserves to be. Deserve to loose? Do you deserve to be talent starved? Is that fair? I'd argue no. Perhaps you said it best: Suffice to say, there is no concept of parity. Why compete if you know you have no chance to compete? Why should being middling or mediocre be a goal for a lot of teams? I hope US leagues never adopt such a monarchical and punishing system. I guess it works for the soccer leagues in Europe or was designed for big money and winning like Juvi and Inter to stay on top? I’m just glad my team Roma is unlikely to be reassigned (unless they totally tank an already disappointing season).

posted by Bag Man at 07:47 PM on March 06

Bag Man: I simply don't see where you're coming from. Supporting the Cubs would be a much more interesting proposition if you saw them streak away with the AAA Championship and saw them win something for a change. The rest of your points I really can't understand at all.

posted by salmacis at 04:10 AM on March 08

I simply don't see where you're coming from. Supporting the Cubs would be a much more interesting proposition if you saw them streak away with the AAA Championship and saw them win something for a change. Perhaps it's a fact that the US minors and majors are incompatible. If even if they were, I've been to minor league games, and the talent levels between them and majors are light years apart. So no, I don't want to see my beloved Cubbies win some sort of second prize while the Yankees/A's rule in a thousand year dynasty. Frankly salmacis I can't understand where your coming from. Dare I suggest that it's a culture difference? I believe that any team should have a fair shot, not at winning it all, but to at least have the ability to build their team through good management and easy accumulation of new talent. I still can't comprehend the fairness of a system that perpetuates those who win just simply because they have won in the past and does not afford struggling teams an opportunity to get better. Not to mention all the scheduling problems. Not to mention if you "promoted" an AAA team, what real major league team would play in a 5,000 seat ballpark? Why would any star play or any young talent what to waste their with a team that has fallen leagues? saw them win something for a change Like I said, the Cubs have won about 15 National league pennants and more recently, a division championship and a Wild Card win. The only team that has never "won" in baseball is maybe the Brewers. My point? Shows that US system affords all or the vast majority of teams the opportunity to win or at least have a shot at the highest level. I don’t want to watch second rate sports too see even one time doormats do well…you need only look at the Mariners, Red Sox, Angles, Indians of the 1990s… Like I said your system punishing an unfair. And while the win may work with soccer, it would not satisfy my sensibilities. I further hope that Roma, a team with a pound tradtion, does not fall victim to this system. It's time to say we can agree to disagree and perhaps both have good arguments on both our sides. I however, just can't accept your arguments and seem unconvinced my mine. Needless to say, I don't think either system will change any time too

posted by Bag Man at 11:18 AM on March 08

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