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Perception more harmful to NBA than reality

Perception is reality, and the perception is that NBA playoff games are fixed.

Updated: June 3, 2002, 2:41 AM ET
By David Aldridge | Special to ESPN.com

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- The NBA has a problem.

The problem is not that there is a conspiracy to put the Lakers (or, in their day, the Bulls) in the Finals, or that playoff games are fixed.

The problem is that so many otherwise rational people think there is a conspiracy to put the Lakers (or, in their day, the Bulls) in the Finals, and that playoff games are fixed. The problem is that the very teams who compete now state openly that they expect to get screwed in important games.

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