After watching the Slam Dunk Contest on Saturday, I, like many people, wondered why Dwight Howard didn't get more points for his sticker dunk. I thought that Dwight's dunks were slightly better than Nate Robinson's. Once again, we were treated to mediocre dunks in the finals, because the men who advanced used their best dunks in the preliminaries. There needs to be a rule change to stop this.
***Sidenote: the verse on Dwight Howard's sticker says "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." (In context, it doesn't mean I can do everything, it means more like "I can put up with anything, good or bad, through Christ who strengthens me.) The judges decided winning the Slam Dunk contest would not be one of those things this year; kind of amusing.***
Anyway, I wondered if Nate Robinson's advancement was due to the dreaded "New York City Factor." I don't think I even have to explain this to you, but I'll give it a few sentences. Basically, New York City has more people than any other US city, and has more than its share of US financial and media powerhouses. So anything that is associated with New York City is assumed to be a little better than anything else just by default. The judges of what is good (i.e. media) tend to be from NYC itself, so they exhibit hometown bias.
So for example, if I'm a football blogger, and I blog out of New York City, I have many more potential contacts in my city to trade links and comments with, and there are many more Giants and Jets fans out there. Therefore, my blog will have more hits and comments than it might if I was blogging out of, say, Kansas City. Of course, it may be that I AM better, or even I am in New York City BECAUSE I am better, and a big company wooed me there. Talent attracts talent. But, way too often for my liking, a NYC product gets blessed by the "NYC Factor" for all the wrong reasons.
Nate Robinson; blessed by the NYC Factor or not? You decide.
As a bonus, here's another blogger's take on a potential case of NYC Factor involving Lebron James: http://benjamincox.blogspot.com/2007/02/is-for-akron.html . I agree with him, because of the "Four" being shown first.