With a couple weeks left in the NBA season, the Milwaukee Bucks (28-29 going into Wednesday's game against New York) are battling for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Division. This is a rough approximation of the line that will be used by local TV sports anchors trying to sell Bucks highlights this week.
Wow! A bona fide playoff contender in a league where over half the teams make the postseason - get that champagne on ice!
Did you expect less sarcasm for a club that has been irrelevant for decades playing in a state that has grown accustomed to regular postseason trips from all of its other major teams?
A recent four-game winning streak over the dregs of the league kept the Bucks in contention for the honor of being swept in the first round of the playoffs by the vastly superior Chicago Bulls. Their location in the middle of the standings will also doom their chances of getting anybody good in the 2012 draft. A good team makes its fans joyful, while a bad team makes them bitter. A mediocre team like Milwaukee just inspires apathy.
Last week, a Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel editorial argued for replacing the 24-year-old Bradley Center with a new publicly funded arena that could cost as much as $300 million; otherwise the Bucks might be headed out of town to a city like Seattle. Hear that, Seattle? Soon you might be able to watch Carlos Delfino go 3-10, as he did in a 109-89 Monday night loss to Oklahoma City, the most exciting team to play in Milwaukee in over a month. How can you withstand the excitement?