NBA offering downloads of playoff games

The NBA has quietly launched a download store so fans can watch the Warriors miraculously beat the Mavericks all over again.

Lately, I've been getting into basketball. I know what you're going to say. That I'm jumping on the bandwagon. (I am.) It all started because of a man, of course.

No, not Steve Nash. It's because of a man who loves Steve Nash. He hooked me with the players' back stories, his impassioned declarations about the grace of the game and, more to the point, the way he distinctly pronounces each player's name.

So I started following the Phoenix Suns and then, naturally, my hometown team: the Golden State Warriors. (The last time I attended a Warriors game was in the '80s. I can't remember the year exactly, but it's likely I was still wearing braces, still getting my hair permed and still watching Magnum P.I.)

It seems that just about everyone is suddenly watching the Warriors again. The New York Times reported Monday that the NBA has started offering video downloads of playoff games for $2.99--free of advertising and timeouts. Sales so far have been described as "promising." And guess whose games are among the most popular? That's right, the series that had the No. 8 seed (Golden State) beating the No. 1 seed (some team from Dallas owned by some dude who made a lot of money from the Internet).

So far, only playoff games from this season and last season are available, according to the Times. A series costs $12.99, while all the playoff games can be had for $79.99. The National Basketball Association said it eventually plans to offer older games--there are some 40,000 games on tape in its archive.

"We're getting slowly to our older games, but we'll be focused 100 percent on that this summer," Steve Hellmuth, an NBA senior vice president, told the Times. "We view this as a mission we have to execute for the fans," he said. "The revenue side of it comes second."

Yes, for the fans. I'm just not sure I want to see Nash knock heads with Tony Parker again. Six stitches!

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