The NBA's second Golden Age is here – SB Nation

Nielsen reports that ratings on the NBA’s ESPN and TNT broadcasts this season are up 32 percent over last year, and has hit the highest level since 2010-11 (the beginning of the famed LeBron/Heat villain story arc). This is not a huge surprise to anyone paying attention: A couple of games this season have hit huge numbers and the league is really compelling from top to bottom.

This is worth keeping in mind as the NBA considers certain reforms. That doesn’t mean that the NBA shouldn’t change anything — that’s a sure way to fall off your perch eventually. The league must continue innovating. But big, sweeping reform ideas — including expansion, draft rule changes, and season length reduction — deserve heavy scrutiny.

The NBA has worked to make the game flow better in recent years despite adding (and often expanding) video replay. The timeout reduction is a great example of this. It’s hard to say how much of an impact the NBA’s various competitive balance efforts have contributed to the wide distribution of superstars: We still have one major superteam in Golden State, and a bunch of would-be superteams in other places.

I’ll throw out something you won’t hear get too much credit for the current NBA boom but that clearly deserves investigation into its positive role for the sport: the AAU circuit. This remains the primary development path for the best players in the league (including even some international prospects). Something’s going right there.

Scores Galore …

PHX 113, TOR 126
UTA 94, OKC 100
WAS 106, POR 92

… And So Much More

Holy smokes, Bradley Beal dropped 51 on the Blazers!

Another ugly injury, this one hitting Devin Booker. Meanwhile, Steph Curry appears to be out a couple of weeks with his sprained ankle.

Paul Flannery lists out

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