Only 409 more days.

That’s right, in fewer than 59 weeks, the 2010 NBA free agency period opens.

And it will open sans LeBron James. No Dwyane Wade, either. Chris Bosh will be inked to a team already. Not even Joe Johnson will be available. All of those guys get their big deals this summer.

But I am still totally psyched for next year’s free agent class for one reason:

The possibility of Kevin Durant coming to Milwaukee.

(Quick pause for me to put my crack pipe down.)

It’s a long shot, I know. Oklahoma City will probably not let him go, considering he is a top-five player in the league. And even if by some horrible mismanagement the Thunder didn’t sign Durantula, why would he come to Milwaukee? No one comes to Milwaukee. Bango the Buck has even been petitioning the league to let the Las Vegas Whitetails into the NBA so he can leave Wisconsin.

And yet I cling to this shred of hope. The thought of Kevin Durant pumping in 30 points a game with second banana Andrew Bogut chiming in with 16 and 12 boards a night makes me tingle. And on the nights Durant can’t get it going, Young Money Brandon Jennings can go off for 25 large and ten dimes.

If they sign Durant, the Bucks would threaten 60 wins in the Eastern Conference with defensive guru Scott Skiles running the show. And they would be instant title contenders .

I write this knowing full well that the Bucks are more likely to sign me next season with that $19 million they will save with Michael Redd’s expiring contract. But I still hope.

And hope like mine has infiltrated sports fans world wide. Just look around:

Suddenly, the NFL Draft is as intriguing and watchable to fans as the actual games .

The classic NBA Finals match up of Lakers-Celtics is bearing down on us, and yet seemingly all we can talk about is where King James will be playing next year.

After I watched the Yankees celebrate their 27th World Series title last Season, I realized that there was much more excitement about the Bombers’ free agent signings of Mark Teixeira, CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett before the season started than there was when the champagne was flowing in the Bronx in October.

It’s an interesting trend that we seem to be experiencing right now, in that we as fans care more about what happens in our teams’ war rooms than on the field.

But for fans of a team like the Browns, that interest in hoping for something better to come along is much more compelling than watching Jake Delhomme throw a pick on third-and-long.

Wishing for those NBA Draft Lottery ping pong balls to come up aces for the Warriors is more fun for their fans to think about than watching the Magic dominate them by 30. Staying true to the Pirates when the chips are down is tough for their loyal faithful when Paul Maholm gives up six runs in the first inning without recording an out.

We’re still watching our teams play the games. But we’re moving further from the bleachers, and closer to the owner’s box to take them in.

With that in mind, let me give a shout out to Kevin Durant:

Come to Milwaukee, man. It’s a fun place to spend your career. Nothing here is really that cold, except for the beer. I’ll even buy you one after you don that #35 Christmas-tree colored jersey at your press conference next summer.

It’s only 409 days away.

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