We live in an attention economy-driven world where the most important things are the things you see the most and the things you see the most are the things a few select people decide are important. If you’re not cool enough to be noticed, then you’ll never be cool because you’ll never be seen.

It’s a vicious cycle and it’s something Tyrus Thomas doesn’t like at all. From the Charlotte Observer:

“My drive is because of the fact every other team is getting mentioned right now, whether it’s their blockbuster trade or how good they’ll be,” Thomas told the Observer Monday. ”So I know we have to come in and work. My drive right now is to be mentioned. It just disgusts me when you watch ESPN, and out of the 30 teams you’re not mentioned.

“I think a lot of our guys have that chip on their shoulders. Just to show we’re in the league, too, you know?’’

If you’re a team no one cares about, this is the way to do it. Just play your balls off, try to be fun and win some games. Eventually someone will put you on TV.

Except, of course, for the fact that the league’s national TV schedule is pretty well set and the only way to get more exposure is to be chosen as the featured game for Fan Night on NBATV. And because they’re the Bobcats, they’ve only got four national games.

Not to mention, they were the 26th slowest team in the league last year, according to the pace statistics provided by Basketball-Reference. And they were the 26th worst offensive team in the league last year. And they had less dunks last year than Dwight Howard and Blake Griffin did individually. And their leading dunker (Kwame Brown, 72nd in the league) just signed a hilariously huge contract with another team. And their highest draft pick might not be joining the team this season.

I’m not saying it’s impossible for the Bobcats to get national exposure, I’m just saying there are some obstacles. Maybe Tyrus Thomas just needs to start saying quotable things to anyone who’ll listen. Not only did that “get my check” blurb get him some attention, this little nugget got him a super valuable blog post. You gotta start somewhere.

(via SLAM)