Lets answer the question right away: Yes, it is absolutely time to fix the NBA All-Star game. One of my biggest problems with the NBA in general — and any sport for that matter — has been the heavy focus on offense. Perhaps I am in the minority, but as a competitive person, proper defense has always been more attractive than scoring a million points. I do realize higher scoring attracts the more casual fans, yet I am a huge proponent, in all sports, of defense wins championships.

So where does this fit into the All-Star game: the ridiculously high final score lost my attention. I realize, like any All-Star match-up, the score will be higher because of the level of talent, but 163-158 takes me well out of my comfort zone. By the end, the additional scoring becomes monotonous making me utterly bored with every single excessive basket. And a lot of this has to do with the players not really caring to play defense. No one is blind, they are taking zero risks during this primetime game.

Therefore the overall quality of the defense and the game is brought down: for goodness sake, there were only two blocks in the entire game, with the Western Conference accounting for none of them. So how do you ensure better quality from all those involved? Well, you use your wallet and incentivize the athletes. One option is to add a large purse — I am sure someone would love to sponsor it. However, it would have to be an awful big payout with 12 players vying for an equal amount of cash.

So my plan to fix the NBA All-Star game is something that has been suggested by a lot of people: use the MLB’s mentality and put home field advantage on the line.  Love or hate the sport, the MLB has the best All-Star game because it actually means something: the winner gets home field advantage for their league in the World Series.

Since the rule change in 2003, the team with home field advantage is 8-4 in the World Series: so it actually makes a huge difference. This simple change, which was genuinely innovative by the backwards MLB, added a competitive edge that is severely lacking in the others sports: therefore it should be adopted by the NBA and even the NHL. So why not implement this, instead of using a better record (NBA) or seed (NHL)?

Teams with chances to make the finals will play harder because it does make a difference. And money certainly talks: the players/organizations with incentives for winning the championship will push harder for that All-Star win if it gives them an edge. It is not brain surgery, it is an easy fix.

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