Very minor controversy over Ricky Davis placing a bounty on dunking on Oden. Yes, I know the arguements as to why we shouldn't care, why it doesn't matter and why it even might make the game more exciting but I don't like it. I think public placing of bounties for actions within a game should be discouraged by the league.
Do I care that Ricky Davis placed a bounty? No. Do I think opposing players would want to dunk on Oden bounty or no bounty? Certainly. But it's not so much what it is today as what I'm afraid it could become. It's mostly innocent if we are talking dunks. But what is the next evoulution? Soon does it become rewards or bounties for knocking a guy to the ground? Bounties for vicious picks? Even the seemingly innocent "dunk" could have it's dangerous side. What happens if a player is so focused on obtaining the bounty that he tries a dunk that really doesn't exist. A wild drive to the basket that could put himself in danger of injury and in defense perhaps even Oden?
No for a league desperately trying to keep a squeaky clean image, for a league wanting to promote the integrity of it's play and the open and fair image of it's play I think pre-concieved Bounties for in the game actions are dangerous. Certainly a degree of this has always existed and certainly a lot of this is unstoppable but the public nature of it could be stopped easily by either agreement between the league and teams and/or simply fines levied at players publicly setting up bounties. You can think I'm over reacting or being a whimp on the issue but what if a player get's injured trying a dunk that didn't develop naturally in the course of the game just because they were trying to make points in a separate "game" being played behind the scenes in the locker room? What if Oden get's hurt trying to block a dunk that a player really shouldn't of really even tried?
If I'm a coach I also want my guys running my offense and playing our defense. I don't want my players thinking, "Hey tonight at some point I HAVE to dunk against Oden" .
I'm just afraid this seemingly innocent nothing is a slippery slope to sloppy and potentially dangerous play, and I think it would be best if The N.B.A. did what it could to discourage it.