After the cancerous lockout, the decision to have a shorter regular season has made it all the more interesting. The 66-game schedule will give more importance to the regular season, with teams vying to secure a top spot in the standings early. The playoff race will noticeably begin sooner, and before you know it, the trade deadline will be there to spice everything up. Teams such as Utah and Houston could find themselves in the the gut of the standings if they can steal some conference wins early in the season. The ticket sales will certainly be down and the viewers won’t be there at first, but the final weeks of the season will certainly grab the attention of some more people. Just like in 1999, the NBA lockout will put a strain to having an All Star weekend. Therefore, the chances of a 2012 NBA All Star game in Orlando next year are likely dead in the water. That’s to be taken with a grain of salt though, with the league looking to make its dashing debut on Christmas night behind its primetime tripleheader.