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Fan Fed Up with Load Management Doesn’t Have the Energy to Watch All the Games


By Noah Cohen-Greenberg & Sam Mermin

SAN JOSE — Forty-four-year-old Golden State Warriors fan Ned Samuelson announced to his friends and family that he’d finally “had it” with load management after Stephen Curry sat out of the second game of a back-to-back for precautionary reasons, End of the Bench has learned. 

When asked if Curry’s absence ended up costing the Warriors a victory, Samuelson remarked that he didn’t know, as he “can’t watch every game.”

Samuelson told the assembled crowd of his two teenage sons that the NBA should be very, very worried about what the recent trend of load management could mean for its bottom line, claiming that, “If I were Adam Silver, I would do something about this.” 

What strategies might the NBA use to reverse the ongoing trend of stars missing games? 

“Follow the money,” he said.

Samuelson, who team-managed his high school’s JV squad and played “a lot of pickup ball” in college, wondered “why guys don’t love to play anymore.” 

He insisted that in his mid-twenties he “would have been happy to play hoops with my friends Danny and Todd every day if you let me.” 

In fact, he insists most of the appeal — which many would consider being the money or even fame — would be “to go out there and compete.”

A dejected Samuelson began to reminisce about the record-setting 2015-16 Warriors team, which “treated every game as the opportunity it is.” 

Watching 25 or so games of the Warriors' record-setting regular season was “a time in my life when I felt like I was really part of something.” 

He claimed it’s a “damn shame” that players can’t be counted on to give back what he chooses to put in, from time to time, every now and then.

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If Samuelson had the opportunity to play, he said he would be ready to “run through a wall” in warmups. 

Separately, his wife told EOTB that he recently fell asleep during the fourth quarter of a game and she had to come in and turn off the TV. In his defense, she also reported that he was found swaddled in a warm, fuzzy blanket.

A picture of Curry on the sidelines posted by ESPN’s Twitter account further convinced Samuelson of the merits of his argument. 

“It sure looks fun hanging out courtside at a Warriors game, doesn’t it? You could pay me a few million a year to sit there and watch,” Samuelson said, toying with the idea of turning on TNT’s Tuesday night NBA broadcast. “It’s ridiculous. Not to mention unprofessional. Do you see me taking a day off at the sawdust factory?”

“Yeah, dad, every weekend.”

Upon learning the Warriors had, in the absence of their star point guard, lost by double digits to whichever LA team is worse right now, Samuelson sought consolation from his two sons. 

“Do you guys and your buddies even like to play ball anymore?” he asked them. “Do you still think that’s as fun as playing the computer version or taking pictures for Instagram?”

Samuelson likely won’t tune in for Curry’s return on Sunday afternoon, as he will be watching Cake Boss with his family. 

“There’s more to life than basketball,” he explained. “I love the League, but 82 games is just too much.”

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