I don't like the NBA. I've never enjoyed basketball as much as baseball or football. And since the travesty of the Supersonics' "relocation" to OkayCity, I've pretty much ignored it. But there is one thing the NBA gets right - the NBA finals always match up the best team from the east and the west. So even if your team doesn't get in, at least you have some regional affinity toward one of the teams. You can have some ownership, some reason to root for a team from your area to cream those thugs from the East Coast.
This year, even the BCS got lucky enough to match up teams from opposite sides of the country, and in an inverse way, it made rooting for one team over the other an easy pick. Oregon is a hated rival, and it gave all of us out here great satisfaction to see them go down to Auburn.
But look at the final four teams in the NFL playoffs. They all reside far up there on America's right shoulder, where all the dandruff from Canada falls down. Green Bay, Chicago, New York, Pennsylvania. . .that entire region probably makes up, what, 15% of the county? Sure, Green Bay-Chicago is a storied rivalry, but it means as much out here as an Oakland-San Francisco World Series means to people in Florida. I'm sure at ESPN studios in New York this seems like Christmas came again, with all the action right in their backyard. But there's a huge country out here that no longer has any ownership in any of these teams, and therefore no longer really cares.