I completely agree that the basketball games are beautiful to watch, at least as far as looks go. I do think that its the colors and the glossy floor that are really captured well. The hover cam is a great view.
While I appreciate having hockey in HD and it does provide a little improvement in following the puck, reading player's jersey's, as far as looks go it is not as nice as any other sport. I'm hoping that at some point hockey broadcasters will zoom out, show more of the offensive zone and have a lot less camera movement. Until then HD is only a middling improvement for hockey.
Right now football and basketball benefit greatly from improved picture and slightly from wider screen. Hockey benefits only slightly from improved picture and hardly at all from the widescreen. Soccer gains the most, with a much nicer picture and the wide screen makes the biggest difference.