The NBA is considering shortening each regular season game by one minute per quarter for a total of four minutes per game. However, LeBron James and Dirk Nowitzki think the length of games isn't the problem but more so the number of games played in a regular season game.
"I think you don't need 82 games to determine the best eight in each conference. That could be done a lot quicker, but I always understand that it's about money, and every missed game means missed money for both parties, for the league, for the owners, for the players. I understand all that, and that's why I don't think it's going to change anytime soon," Nowitzki said Wednesday, October 15.
Here was LeBron's take on the issue.
"No. It's not the minutes, it's the games. The minutes doesn't mean anything. We can play 50-minute games if we had to. It's just the games. We all as players think it's too many games. In our season, 82 games is a lot. But it's not the minutes. Taking away minutes from the game is not going to shorten the game at all. Once you go out and play on the floor, it don't matter if you play 22 minutes -- like I may be playing tonight -- or you're playing 40 minutes," James added. "Once you play, it takes a toll on your body. So it's not lessening the minutes, I think it's the games."
A lot of times the regular season can be more about keeping all your key players healthy for the playoffs rather than what playoff seed you fall into. For veterans like Dirk Nowitzki and even LeBron James, the biggest challenge for them personally is finding a way to keep themselves fresh enough when the playoffs come around.
Injuries have derailed title contenders in recent years such as the Chicago Bulls with Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder couple years ago and even Manu Ginobili during the 2013 playoffs.
It's unlikely the NBA will decide to cut any regular season games anytime soon as it would cut in into overall revenue. Each game generates a great deal of revenue for each team and would overall make owners and even players take a pay cut.
Although on the other hand, fewer games would spike an increase of importance in each game from the viewer's perspective and likely result in better overall game performances. Players would be fresher game to game and be able to play at a higher energy each game if the season were to be cut by 15, 20, or even 25-plus games.
Ultimately, however, the length of the season has become a key strategy for each head coach to be able to cope with throughout the season. Each coach has to have an understanding on the overall age of his team and its superstars. Being able to manage star's minutes has become a crucial part of a coach's game plan.
So should the NBA shorten their regular season schedule? Well, it depends on who you ask.