Yep, you read that right!
I mean, if boxing and wrestling have weight divisions, then it is just right for basketball to have a height division.
And I mean this to be applied in international competitions like FIBA and the Olympics.
In the spirit of fairness, of course!
I know very well that very competitive athletes will rebuke this idea but I do believe there is a significant difference between a USA team which average height is 6’6″ and a Philippine team with an average of 6’3″. Now 3 inches does not seem a lot but that’s a world of difference once the players play in court.
Further, we Filipinos are not naturally tall people. That being, the athleticism between our big men and the big men of other countries like the US is world’s apart.
Let’s face that fact.
That’s the reason why we need imports!
Just take a look at the past champions in international basketball in the last three decades or so. They were dominated by huge athletic teams. Basketball is, after all, a tall man’s game but the playing field should be leveled.
Specially now that the sport is more scientific than ever.
These huge athletic teams have found more efficient ways to maximize their tall athletic players so much so that even if we apply the same scientific means to optimize our players, there is simply a mismatch. You see what I’m saying?
The last time we played competitively was when most of the world was trying to understand how to play basketball. Now all the rest caught up. Look at China. We used to beat their ass but now they’re dominating us. They found ways to optimize their bigs.
In our case, we simply can’t find enough athletic big men. We have great point guards and even forwards but we lack big men to fight for and defend our front court. We rely on imports and we usually get their rejects.
But having height divisions, I’m thinking at least two height divisions (not age divisions), will at least create parity.
I mean, c’mon, we can’t always rely on heart to win us games. Heart can only do so much.
The taller, more athletic team usually wins it.
And this is not to discredit our players. I salute all of them and everything that they’ve done to bring pride to this country. But sometimes it sucks losing because we just can’t get enough rebound or can’t make a lot of penetrations because the opposing team has basically a Great Wall with them.
And I know this idea will not sit well with a lot of aficionados out there. I am sure some people might even treat the smaller division as second-class basketball competition (just like the way people treat minor leagues) but hey, this is a legit talking point.
How about you? What do you think? Share your thoughts below!