Weather Phenomena Finals

Finals Graphic 2

The NBA Finals seem to be off to a blistering start (At least, so I gather from ESPN highlights. I wouldn’t actually know, since I can’t sacrifice other priorities to be watching sports from 2:30 to 5:30 at night). This championship series has the makings of one of the greatest basketball series of all time. Oklahoma City won the first game; Miami won the second game. Kevin Durant and LeBron James — two of the league’s greatest young stars — are playing at a fevered pitch. There’s not much more that a basketball fan could ask for.

My only complaint is the names of the two teams involved in the series: the Thunder and the Heat.

I’ve never been a fan of concept names to begin with — Heat, Magic, Wild, Thunder, Jazz, Fire — but I think weather phenomena names are particularly dumb. To my middle-aged American ears, any team name that doesn’t end with an “s” just sounds wrong. I’m willing to excuse European soccer teams because of their rich traditions and linguistic quirks (Have you ever listened to a British sports show? They use nouns, verbs, adjectives, and plurals in a totally different way than American sportscasters do). But why North American professional basketball teams do this, I will never understand (it’s interesting to note that these concept names are much more popular in my beloved basketball than in any other American sports). I don’t know if it’s particularly important or particularly practical that I mention this complaint, but let it be known: I think these names are dumb.

Could it be that this is the first time ever that two concept-named teams have met up for a championship? And particularly the first time between two weather-phenomena-named teams? I’m too lazy to look it up… But I’m not too lazy to complain.

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