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Piggybacking off your comment on Ethan's post, I think that the league's lack of articulation on the *point* of the IST is what enabled it to be that sort of Rorschach test for one's NBA priors in the first place.

Was the purpose to counter the negative publicity of load management by injecting "importance" into a series of early-season games that players might otherwise sleepwalk through? Viewed through one of The Finder's preferred lenses, GREAT SUCCESS (Borat voice)! Was Silver hoping to cordon off a package of games to sell to a streamer outside of the ESPN/Turner deal? Probably it didn't achieve that goal to the same extent, though obviously we won't know until/unless it does or does not happen.

I'm the NBA junkie in my social group of mostly normie sports fans: anecdotally, without any directive as to why they should care more than any prior Sixers/Cavs game on a Tuesday in December, they didn't. Maybe that's a function of time, and as enough years go by and enough different teams make it to the Vegas portion, more fan bases will start to get into it?

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