I've stopped updating The Sports Logo Pundit, I've just grown bored with reviewing sports logos and I couldn't keep it up the way I wanted to anymore. So my only sports blogging outlet is gone. Thus, you'll have to endure a little bit of sports here at Down With Pants! every once in a while. I know how much everybody loves that...

Minor league basketball has come to Ventura County. Woo. Hoo.

Good crowd, eh?

The Los Angeles Lightning are the latest entry to the International Basketball League, a struggling 18 team professional basketball league that features teams primarily in the Midwest and the Northwest. They play a 14 game schedule at the Gilbert Sports Arena on the California Lutheran campus. Ticket prices run from an unfathomable $250 for courtside seats to a fine $10 for seats five rows back.

First of all, let's talk about the name. Thousand Oaks is not in the City or the County of Los Angeles so why can't they be the Thousand Oaks Lightning or the Conejo Valley Lightning? Great job of bonding with the community. At the very least, throw us Ventura County residents a bone and take a cue from the Angels and go with the Los Angeles Lightning of Thousand Oaks.

Former NBA Player Lamond Murray looking happy to be there.

Secondly, minor league basketball is only as good as the show that the owners or promoters put on. Too many teams just open up the doors and play the game. And while the game can be entertaining at times, a fundamental problem with minor league basketball is that the players don't care, don't play hard, or play in a style that isn't entertaining to watch. The IBL is known for high scoring games and in fact, the game I attended the Lightning scored 158 points. But the game play was BORING and the team didn't do enough extra-curricular activities to keep me entertained.

They tried the basic that all minor league basketball teams use - nonstop music. Oh lord how I hate the nonstop music. That doesn't pass as entertainment especially when you have someone programming it that doesn't know what they are doing. Personally, I just find it annoying and distracting. They did have a decent halftime with a local karate class putting on a show and they threw t-shirts into the crowd once, but other than that there was no effort, no creativity.

Poor stick figure Chinese team never stood a chance

As much as the movie Semi-Pro was a joke, what minor league basketball needs is a Jackie Moon. A Barnum & Bailey style promoter that will tirelessly promote their product and put on a spectacle for those in attendance. I don't understand why some of these people that purchase these teams don't put more into them. Then they are surprised when only 200-300 people show up (in lots of markets, it's way less than that) and they lose large amounts of money. Gee, I wonder why.

At the very least, if you aren't going to put on a show, make sure that your volunteers or employees are friendly. The lady at the tickets/concessions/merchandise table was the only Lightning employee that I had any contact with and she did not leave a very good impression on me. If it's a burden to sell me a ticket and a little itty-bitty bottle of Coke ($2), then perhaps it is a burden on me to even come to your games anymore.

The Lighting played 12 straight home games to start the season and are heading on the road for six games before returning home for two more. And the last two games are against the Arizona Flame, a team that hasn't played any other games and is listed on the league website as "Coming in 2009". Does than make any sense?

Ah yes, no doubt about it, minor league basketball has come to Ventura County. Woo. Friggin. Hoo.


Dan said...

I didn't know you had that logo blog too.

I'm not a sports fan particularly, but I love American sports team logo - look I even made my own:


Jim Mc said...

Darn you for putting up the link to that darned basketball leagues website......did you happen to notice who is getting a team in 2009.. That's right....Welcome your OLYMPIA REIGN!!!!!!