Taylor Hall Just Needled Every Obnoxiously Insecure Hockey Fan You Know By Tweeting About His Newfound Appreciation of the NBA
There I was, idiotically thinking that I couldn't possibly love Taylor Hall anymore than I already did. So, you can imagine my surprise when he spoke straight to my athletically appreciative soul by jabbing a knife in the side of every hockey fan that thinks diminishing the efforts of all other athletes should be a requirement of enjoying the NHL and twisting...hard.
There honestly isn't one single thing that ignites the insecurities of hockey's most overly obsessive observers quite like bringing up basketball, and the (technically still) reigning NHL MVP did just that and more by unintentionally reminding the entire internet of what's been his own league's most pressing issue for multiple decades running. For that reason, I think it would be nice if Taylor Hall offered to pay the next therapy bill for the faction of close-minded fans whose world promptly collapsed upon reading a good ole' Canadian boy's gratuitous praise of professional basketball after his experience enjoying it in a non-traditional market.
Now, said issue exists, in large part, because hockey inherently isn't anywhere near as superstar-driven or individualistically encouraging as basketball. You hardly need fully functional eyesight to see the amount of extreme differences that can be easily and immediately identified between two sports that, due to a multitude of factors (some avoidable, some not), clash culturally. That's why, as can be read in the actual words that Taylor Hall oh-so-carefully chose, this wasn't some sort of attempt at an apples-to-apples comparison. Unfortunately, if you don't think it will be defensively interpreted as such then you've somehow been fortunate enough not to encounter the type of hockey fan who will stop at no amount of illogical analogizing in a nauseatingly endless effort to get you to like their sport and only their sport.
What Taylor Hall essentially implied is that, though the games themselves are a matter of preference, the NBA produces a much more intriguing show with better character development than the NHL (and all other pro leagues, for that matter). That might be a difficult thing to admit during a postseason that is unequivocally the most gripping in all of sports. However, how can you argue against something so blatantly obvious that a superstar who has dedicated his entire life and livelihood to winning the Stanley Cup felt comfortable saying so on a public platform that collectively bears its claws at contrarianism?
The NBA has plenty of its own flaws, but among them are not a lack of adaptability, a lack of marketability, a lack of publicized personalities, or a lack of entertainment value. I say the following as a loyal consumer of hockey above all else: If you perceive that undeniable fact to be a subtle dig at the NHL then me thinks that you, as an overly sensitive hockey fan with an inferiority complex, doth protest far too much.