NBLTigers
Earlier this year

Should the NBL return to 48 min games?

This was a question in NBL Overtime and Liam shut it down without a thought.

I want to have a real conversation about the benefits of going back to a 48m's or staying with the 40's. The way I see it is:

For 40m games.

• Are good for TV. Fits in 2 hour schedule.

• Less chance of injury for injury prone players (known to be injured in other leagues).

• Teams don't need much depth (7-8 players) only needed to play most games. So better chance to see the stars players.

• Fits with FIBA rules.

For 48m games.

• Same length as NBA and G league games.

• Longer playing time would mean more minutes for local players.

• Higher scores.

• Players wanting to play in the NBA would have a better chance at proving themselves (Next Star players).

Almost every game this year that has been considered a great game has gone to at least 1 overtime. Those extra minutes meant the game lasted almost as long as a 48m game would, and we saw the players who we expected step up and be stars.

NBA players trying to stay fit for the NBA and mount a return would scratch off the NBL because we don’t play enough games (look at 3-4 each week in China or other countries) compared to the NBL (1-2 per week) and the games are not full 48m's. An NBA player looking to get back to the NBA wants as many minutes to show they can score big points, but 40m games rob them of 8m's a game time.

Thoughts?

Topic #49877 | Report this topic


Weedy Slug  
Earlier this year

I'm good with 40

Reply #887743 | Report this post


koberulz  
Earlier this year

I like this theory that NBA GMs look at PPG and are too stupid to look at per-36 or efficency numbers.

Reply #887744 | Report this post


KET  
Earlier this year

" Almost every game this year that has been considered a great game has gone to at least 1 overtime."

Generally speaking an overtime game means a close game. Generally speaking close games tend to be good games!


The 40mins advantages are well laid out. Certainly fitting into 2 hours is a huge benefit.

48 minutes comes down to alignment with NBA for players aiming for NBA and the marketing value/narrative of higher stats. People love the narrative of stats, and NBA dictates the perspective aspect fair bit whether we like it or not.

I'm not fussed either way - I do miss the 48min games though. The NBL always felt like it did the 48min game much better than NBA where it always felt drawn out (because it is).

40 minute games are fine

Reply #887748 | Report this post


Sebastian  
Earlier this year

Aren't the only leagues in the world that run 48 min games NBA, G-League and Puerto Rico?

Reply #887751 | Report this post


Weedy Slug  
Earlier this year

The idea of trades at anytime during the season is also stupid.
Players should only be replaced if import sucks or injury imo.

Reply #887753 | Report this post


Perthworld  
Earlier this year

Aren't the only leagues in the world that run 48 min games NBA, G-League and Puerto Rico?

and PBA.

Reply #887755 | Report this post


AngusH  
Earlier this year

I hate it when they made the change, much prefer it to 48 mins these days. The 2 hour window for a game is perfect IMO.

Reply #887761 | Report this post


koberulz  
Earlier this year

Does China not do 48-minute games anymore?

They need to just leave it be, instead of changing it every few years. It won't be too much longer before there have been more seasons of 40-minute games than there were 48-minute games, and the longer game will become the anomaly. Either way you've got over 15 years of stats that are affected, so that argument really doesn't fly anymore the way it did back in 2010.

Reply #887763 | Report this post


Sebastian  
Earlier this year

I guess the funny side is there are plenty of European players drafted into the NBA every year. More than probably anywhere else. They only play 40 mins. Doesn't seem like a problem for NBA recruiters does it?

Reply #887766 | Report this post


KET  
Earlier this year

I don't think that’s at issue, given most NBA players come from college which is 40mins/two 20min halves.

Reply #887771 | Report this post


LV  
Earlier this year

Stick with 40.

1hr 45 is super quick. Better for viewing and following the league. Busy people have shorter attention spans these days. 40 minutes packs a nice punch.

48 minute games more likely to be over with 7 or 8 minutes to go. Lots of those extra minutes end up being junk time.

Reply #887772 | Report this post


BALLER#3  
Earlier this year

For TV purposes 40 minute games are a no brainer. Something weird about going to a game though and leaving only a little over 90 minutes later if it's a quick game.

I think the 40 minute game is fine, but getting the game day experience outside of the basketball is so much more important when there is so little actual basketball time. Particularly pre-game, post-game and half-time. I would imagine some clubs would do well in these areas, and some wouldn't.

Reply #887773 | Report this post


Cram  
Earlier this year

I was one of those against the move to 40 minutes (less basketball is clearly worse right?) but like some others I think its fine now. I think matching the international game works and is much better from a TV point of view.

The historical stats thing is obviously not great, but given its changed a couple of times already that will never be perfect. Just stick with how it is and it'll become less of a factor each year.

I'm surprised the league hasn't gone to 48 given its thirstiness for NBA comparisons. I can see the appeal to casual fans being more easily able to compare stats, and if thats the way they wanna go, fine, but I think 40 is good

Reply #887774 | Report this post


Luuuc  
Earlier this year

40 for me please

Reply #887776 | Report this post


hoopie  
Earlier this year

Likewise, 40 for me

Reply #887778 | Report this post


Iso24  
Earlier this year

Defo stay with 40. I didn't like the change when it happened but now makes no sense to change back.

Reply #887779 | Report this post


BALLER#3  
Earlier this year

The stats argument is a funny one. I feel like the NBA would probably change to 40 too, if they didn't have the historical stats obsession.

They are already looking at ways to reduce workload, but keep a high number of games so it realistically should be a no brainer for them. Probably would make the NBA a better product too, getting rid of some of the reliance on bench depth.

Reply #887780 | Report this post


Kanga  
Earlier this year

If you are interested in the development of local talent, you would most definitely go to 48mins. That is indisputable. Just look at the benches that aren't being used, or players that have limited minutes, and they are young Australian players. A local league should care about that.
Otherwise just stick with 40mins if you don’t care enough about that.

Reply #887781 | Report this post


Cram  
Earlier this year

You could achieve the same goals for development of local players by removing the extra restricted players that have been added over the last few years.

Reply #887782 | Report this post


Isaac  
Earlier this year

I always liked 48 but could appreciate the justification for 40 minute games. As a TV product, 40 felt fine, but over too quickly when spectating in person.

The historical stats argument is less relevant now that there's a recent volume of 40 minute games.

An argument for 48 is opportunity for upcoming or end of bench players, but you can deliver that with extra teams, underpinning leagues or in-season tournaments. In an NBL game can sometimes make it like watching extra garbage time (imagine watching more of that United-36ers game for example). Maybe my views on that have changed as I've got older and had less time to watch full games.

I don't have time to watch games at all these days, so I look at stats. I find the stats from 40 minute games fairly dull. Often it's like picking through garbage for scraps. 15 points is a good game. Sometimes the top scorer had 18, or 4 assists. I like looking at NBA box scores where the stats are counted pretty liberally. But this is all very silly justification for game duration; why not make it 60 minutes or 100? I often wonder if someone could computer-generate a league of characters and stats and some base level of faux-drama like the average NBA season, and whether I'd still find it interesting without a game being played.

I did wonder the other day whether enough had been done to make a 48 minute game time-efficient for TV before they switched. There's a lot of time wasting, even if much of it suits television advertising.

Reply #887783 | Report this post


Cram  
Earlier this year

I find the arguments of those in favour of 40 or 48 minute games using individual games to justify kinda funny.

I like 40, because that last game I watched was terrible at the end and who'd wanna watch that more? Or I like 48 because the last game I watched was so good, I'd love 8 more minutes of it.

I do remember the NBL making a point to cut down on time out lengths etc in the early 2000s but it is hard to get the 48 minute version to be under the 2 hour mark consistently. From memory it was most often just over (as opposed to NBA games which average about 2.5 hours)

Reply #887785 | Report this post


LV  
Earlier this year

Your post was (unintentionally?) Hilarious Isaac

I feel the same. I spend more time following box scores or daydreaming about sport than watching sports.

Definitely feel more accepting of 40 minute games given the short length allows me to actually see a fair chunk of a given game much more easily

Reply #887786 | Report this post


Dunkman  
Earlier this year

Box scores don't tell you the whole story, some players score twenty but let in twenty five. Some players get two rebounds but box out so team mates get plenty, some players play very good help D while others don’t bother. Some players and far to many imo dribble the air out the ball to chuck rubbish up or throw it to a team mate that has to chuck up rubbish. Stats can be very miss leading and since Joey left Sixers it shows in their recruiting.

40 minutes is fine.

Reply #887787 | Report this post


Isaac  
Earlier this year

As time goes, how relevant are time slots to game duration? I don't think any scheduled TV gets watched in our house at all, but then we watch almost no sport (besides Olympics, I guess). Everything is streamed. On their site, the NBL games offer (in a kinda-clunky way, but not awful) full game, compressed, highlights, etc. Maybe with live events, mainstream TV is still king?

Reply #887788 | Report this post


koberulz  
Earlier this year

Live sport is the one thing TV will still pay money for, because most people do watch it live, and thus the ads don't get fast-forwarded through.

Reply #887789 | Report this post


Perthworld  
Earlier this year

Maybe with live events, mainstream TV is still king?

Not sure why this is a question - of course it is.

Reply #887790 | Report this post


Isaac  
Earlier this year

Mainstream TV as in the concept of fixed channels with a fixed amount of airtime. Where length of games might be a factor. Doesn't necessarily need to be the same thing as live TV. Non-TV versions mean choice of commentary, angles, language, ease of pause/rewind, etc.

Like I said, I'm oblivious to how others watch TV. Went to a friend's house the other day and it was jarring with TV news on in the background - that someone would have TV on as background noise, or that anyone still watched TV news. (I guess the new intolerable "We don't even have a TV" is "We have 20 screens and only use them for streaming.")

Reply #887793 | Report this post


Perthworld  
Earlier this year

As a hardcore sports fan I can't avoid linear channels (non free to air) but I understand your POV being more of a casual.

TV news in the background would be mega tilting. Yuck. I cringe whenever I see FTA on a TV in say a venue or business. Come on, it's 2022.

Reply #887797 | Report this post


Hermann  
Earlier this year

Some want 40 others 48.. think maybe 44.. so get some increase in play time.. should still fit into the 2 hour windows... 40 minutes can really be too quick. Want to see the best showcasing talents for longer.. 4 b 11.. might only be extra minute per quarter but it adds up to 4 more per game.. over a0 sea0son that's like many many more minutes that didn't have...any thoughts. More ball is good ball...

Reply #887819 | Report this post


Luuuc  
Earlier this year

I like your 44 rationale but I also like the traditional 48, so I think we should take the best of each of those and go with 46.

Hear me out. If we're being honest then no one gives a shit about the 2nd & 3rd quarters. We're hyped at the start of the game and enthralled at the end, so we play 12 minute 1st & 4th quarters, but 11 minute 2nd & 3rd quarters, making a total of 46.

Reply #887820 | Report this post


Hermann  
Earlier this year

I could live with that luuuc... 46 seems good compromise. Both halves are the same.. and lije it's not footy or soccer where can have benefit of a breeze if one quarter is longer.. 46. Weigh better than 40.. like your thinking.. positivity creativity is good..

Reply #887824 | Report this post


NBLTigers  
Earlier this year

I like both your ideas Luuuc of 44m quarters or even 46m quarters. 12m quarters for the 1st and 4th quarters makes sense.

Reply #887827 | Report this post


Cram  
Earlier this year

Could you still call them quarters?

I think while the NBL is still a super minor player for TV rights, a two hour package to fit into FTA timeslots does matter.

Clearly nobody cares that an AFL game goes for 2.5 hours or a cricket game goes for days. But the NBL just isn't in this league

Reply #887828 | Report this post


BALLER#3  
Earlier this year

Im only half joking but I wish basketball went with the NHL's 15 minute thirds. I actually think it would be really good, but would never happen.

Reply #887829 | Report this post


KET  
Earlier this year

"I always liked 48 but could appreciate the justification for 40 minute games. As a TV product, 40 felt fine, but over too quickly when spectating in person."

I have to say I agree and feel this sentiment as well.

“ I find the stats from 40 minute games fairly dull. Often it's like picking through garbage for scraps. 15 points is a good game. Sometimes the top scorer had 18, or 4 assists. I like looking at NBA box scores where the stats are counted pretty liberally. But this is all very silly justification for game duration; why not make it 60 minutes or 100?”

Sorry for re-posting a slab, but 100% agree - NBL stats sheets are a boring read - and a lot of sports, particularly basketball, build their narrative and entertainment from statistics. Ie Giddey triple double is like a century in cricket and fun to track in otherwise mediocre 36ers games.

When you're an entertainment product, and a huge part of the product is the build up and narrative surrounding it with statistics being the fundamental tool, it makes for a strong argument for 48mins.

The thing about narrative is it’s story telling and perception based, so whilst 90s in cricket may only be a handful of runs away from a century, it’s the centuries that build the narrative and have statistical significance.

For basketball, 15ppg doesn’t have much significance - 20 etc does. I remember the days of Maher/Farley/Rychart dynamic where all three averaged above 20ppg for a season or part of, and that built the narrative and certainly stayed in my memory.

Some might say if you translate x to 48mins it’s actually above 20ppg, but people don’t do that and we can’t expect the people to do it because we want them to, so it doesn’t help.

Yes, the stats compare to NBA because the NBA is that powerful, it’s the somewhat arbitrary baseline for interpreting stats.

That’s not to say the NBL should go 48mins, play no defence and jack up shots so everyone gets 50ppg.

I think it’s a balance of having the capacity for people to reach decent milestones that can push the entertainment value that a narrative provides, and a visual game that doesn’t look like a bunch of unfit 40yos playing social basketball.

Keeping in mind the casual viewer and casual conversation is as important as ever to the growth of basketball, that NBL can’t thrive being a niche product, we can’t expect basketball to succeed if we are content with dull stats that only a cult following can appreciate!

Reply #887937 | Report this post


Gorillafunk  
Earlier this year

I really wish that there would be some global alignment. I understand there are always going to be regional differences in rule interpretations etc but surely the NBA and FIBA should at some point discuss working towards an agreement. Having something as fundamental as the length of the game different is very ordinary.

Either:
- globally we all align with the NBA and go to 48
- the NBA and handful of others align with the rest of the world and move to 40
- we all agree on a middle ground like 44.

It is obviously a fairly stupid argument, but I know a lot of people who think the NBL is inferior because the points are lower. Many don't know there are differences in game lengths and only think the players miss too many shots.

Reply #888112 | Report this post


LV  
Earlier this year

I'm as much of a stats lover as anyone else but if we're basing our main arguments around the importance of stats to narratives, I think we're putting the cart before the horse

I think we should choose the shortest timeslot where it doesn't feel so short that we're losing anything intrinsically valuable. I realise this is subjective but 40 minutes feels fine to me.

48 minutes isn't too long- it's still shorter than an AFL game or BBL. These things are always a matter of degree.

But basketball is a 2nd tier sport, not a sport with a history of cultural dominance like AFL or cricket, and we're trying to grow, so I like the idea of keeping the shorter timeslot,which prioritises TV viewership, watchability and entertainment

Reply #888113 | Report this post


KET  
Earlier this year

"I think we're putting the cart before the horse"

Can you elaborate why you think that?

“so I like the idea of keeping the shorter timeslot, which prioritises TV viewership, watchability and entertainment”

Does it though?

I think watchability and entertainment might be different for the niche NBL fans, many of whom would be on this forum vs casual viewer/fans.

Generally speaking, my bias is towards consideration for the casual base because it's a market the NBL needs to succeed.

That’s not to say the NBL should try to be a poorer carbon copy of the NBA, because I don’t think that’d get the casual viewer anyway - and I don’t think having zero defence would help legitimacy of the NBL in anyones eyes, but what appeals to the casual viewer market should be considered on their merits - and the old 48 minutes was probably a better compromise to that end.

The meaning of stats and narratives is part of the watchability and entertainment before, during and after games. They aren’t compartmentalised from the in-game action at the time. By example, stature of Ball/Bogut brought a different watchability and entertainment to games, especially for casual viewer, and fans following the Giddey stats for triple doubles...so on so forth.

Obviously Isaacs comment re the boring stats sheets, and the above poster re casual viewers who think the NBL is inferior because the points are lower, emphasise that.

Whether it’s enough to flip back to 48 minutes - I don’t think there’s enough momentum for that, but there are points of merit nonetheless.

“I think while the NBL is still a super minor player for TV rights, a two hour package to fit into FTA timeslots does matter.”

Conventional belief was a 2 hour slot helps achieve FTA - I wonder that still applies though?

These days we see FTA networks give up the half hour slots in primetime and they’ve even gone beyond “going over on purpose”, now they have arbitrary starting times like 8.45pm for the front bar etc.

ESPN have the NBA which regularly goes over their scheduled slots (why they bothered to schedule in a way that games always went over I have no idea!), but clearly they aren’t fussed.

10Peach would they really care if things went over? If it was Ten main channel and it had potential to hit into news I’d get it as that’s one of the last sacred slots.

Even then, would there be major issues with adding 30mins to the game slot and increasing pre/post game coverage?

We could talk about streaming but they’ve thrown the concept of slots out of the window - just look at Netflix with arbitrary lengths.

Anyway just a thought.

“ Like I said, I'm oblivious to how others watch TV.”

Have to say, I only ever have main TV on to watch the HD quality sport, otherwise pure streaming.

Obviously different demographics lead different lives, but for me, everything is essentially streamed.

I don’t do the 9-5 Mon-Fri work thing - I’ll be working earlier, later, on weekends so I always watch things when convenient and the work time/free time is blurred, so I don’t have a problem watching sports on weeknights. The Olympics, Australian Open for example I love because it’s not restricted to weekends.

I also don’t have issues watching sport during the day whilst working - which is why summer of cricket and NBA is great to have something on.

To that extent, I’d love to see the NBL play more regularly beyond Thu-Sun, as the other days are no longer “no go zones” that they used to be.

I wonder if we will start seeing sports less restricted to particular “family friendly” times, and slots be less important as streaming progressively takes over in significance.

Hell, I don’t mind the idea of AFL on Mondays if I’m being honest. Maybe not to go, but watch on streaming or TV? Would love it.

I think there’s a change amidst from the ordinary one size fits all past of sports slots for Australian broadcasts.

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An Australian basketball forum covering NBL, WNBL, ABL, Juniors plus NBA, WNBA, NZ, Europe, etc | Forum time is: 8:42 am, Mon 4 Jul 2022 | Posts: 923,324 | Last 7 days: 427