A user (who has since deleted their account) wrote a lengthy essay-like post exploring two incompatible but popular pairings in the fandom: Naruto Uzumaki and Sakura Haruno (Chie Nakamura), and Naruto and Hinata Hyūga (Nana Mizuki), which are commonly referred to as NaruSaku and NaruHina respectively. As fans will surely know, of the two, the pairing which became canon in the series was NaruHina, and for this particular fan, this was the only logical outcome as it made “perfect sense from both a thematic point of view and from a raw romantic point of view.”
This Redditor did not hold back in dragging NaruSaku through the mud and unpacking in exactly what ways NaruHina was superior. Indeed, perhaps the one negative aspect of this essay is how it’s missing some nuance, as another user, u/nightfishin, pointed out: “There’s plenty of times she shows [Naruto] care and affection, the way you write about Sakura she comes off as this all evil witch.”
Nevertheless, the essay goes into comprehensive detail as to why “NaruHina was the only couple that was ever going to make sense in a story deeply infused by Taoist ideas and themes.” Furthermore, the user relegates NaruSaku fans to a position of ignorance in regards to romance: “shippers don’t understand real-world love and romance; they’re young, naive and have weird standards for love and relationships that no adult in a healthy romance would ever accept.”
Indeed, in an interview Kishimoto himself revealed that he had “decided on Hinata a while ago” and that if he were to make Sakura fall for Naruto, she would seem too inconsistent as she had always had feelings for Sasuke. Making the kunoichi change her mind all of a sudden would’ve, in his mind, made her unlikeable.