With the Nets prevailing in their first-round series over Toronto, it's time for one of basketball's newest yet most venerable traditions—the ceremonial redirecting of Nets.com to the website of Brooklyn's next opponent.
Yes, soon after Paul Pierce's series-clinching block, Nets.com began redirecting to the official site of the Miami Heat. This is likely not especially disturbing to the Nets, because the URL spent the last two weeks sending confused internetters to the Raptors' site. And before that, for most of the season it redirected to the Knicks' site.
It's classic cybersquatting, some mysterious person or persons who came into possession of Nets.com before the NBA or the team had the chance to buy it. And ever since the Nets moved to Brooklyn and became relevant again, the cybersquatter has waged a one-sided war against owner Mikhail Prokhorov, attempting to goad him into coughing up a reported seven-figure payment for the domain.
A couple of years back, the site tried to taunt Prokhorov by referencing his feud with Mark Cuban, Prokhorov's 2007 prostitution scandal, sending visitors to vote Knicks players into the all-star game, and finally to a Jay-Z fansite.
"The Nets initiated the discussions," a league source told Nets Daily in 2012, "and would like to buy the address, but not at the price that's being asked."
Neither side appears to have budged. The Nets are doing fine without Nets.com, which, even if they owned it, would still redirect to NBA.com/nets. But one thinks the cybersquatter would have a little more leverage if they redirected to some really awful gore or porn site, rather than just another NBA team.