BY EVAN WEINER
Sometimes you wonder why people become emotionally and, in some cases, overzealous about sports. After all, it is just a game and when one ends another begins. It is understandable that someone cares when they are an active participant in a sports activity but why should a fan care about an industry — sports is an industry — when the real owners of sports seem to take a rather cavalier attitude about their customers.
Just in the last week, the National Basketball Association’s collective ownership through their hired help — NBA Commissioner David Stern is an employee of a consortium of 29 owners (the franchise in New Orleans is owned by the league) — “postponed” (canceled is the real word) the opening training camp sessions and 43 preseason games (which count as regular season games in season ticket plans even though they are not bona fide contests in the strictest sense of competition as part of the 30 team’s business plan.
The only good news for season ticket holders is that a good many of those games were scheduled in so-called neutral sites). There is no word on whether cable TV subscribers will get a refund for paying for something that is not going to be available for them -- NBA pre-season games on cable TV.
While David Stern and the owners’ lockout continues, there is a very real possibility that Seton Hall and St. John’s University basketball fans may see the Big East Conference crumble as big time jock factories presidents and chancellors are again building up cartels and “expanding” big time sports conferences.