The NBA issued the following statement today regarding the 2017 NBA All-Star Game:
“The NBA has decided to relocate the 2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte with the hope of rescheduling for 2019.
“Since March, when North Carolina enacted HB2 and the issue of legal protections for the LGBT community in Charlotte became prominent, the NBA and the Charlotte Hornets have been working diligently to foster constructive dialogue and try to effect positive change. We have been guided in these discussions by the long-standing core values of our league. These include not only diversity, inclusion, fairness and respect for others but also the willingness to listen and consider opposing points of view.
“Our week-long schedule of All-Star events and activities is intended to be a global celebration of basketball, our league, and the values for which we stand, and to bring together all members of the NBA community – current and former players, league and team officials, business partners, and fans. While we recognize that the NBA cannot choose the law in every city, state, and country in which we do business, we do not believe we can successfully host our All-Star festivities in Charlotte in the climate created by HB2.
“We are particularly mindful of the impact of this decision on our fans in North Carolina, who are among the most passionate in our league. It is also important to stress that the City of Charlotte and the Hornets organization have sought to provide an inclusive environment and that the Hornets will continue to ensure that all patrons – including members of the LGBT community – feel welcome while attending games and events in their arena.
“We look forward to re-starting plans for our All-Star festivities in Charlotte for 2019 provided there is an appropriate resolution to this matter.
“The NBA will make an announcement on the new location of the 2017 NBA All-Star Game in the coming weeks.”
Sources: Spurs Plan to Meet with Kawhi, Work Out Differences
With head coach Gregg Popovich expected to take the lead, the Spurs plan to meet with [Kawhi] Leonard over the summer to gauge whether the sides can work out their differences and continue what has been largely a positive and productive partnership, sources said.
Leonard was sidelined for all but nine games this season because of a quadriceps issue that has led to an icy relationship with the team’s front office over his diagnosis and the rehabilitation process. He continues to rehab in New York.
Popovich, Buford and Leonard’s Spurs teammates have long maintained the squad wants the star forward back in the fold, but they’ve also all said his long-term health is most important.
Source: Michael C. Wright of ESPN
Report: Hawks, Budenholzer Agree to Part Ways
The Atlanta Hawks and coach Mike Budenholzer have mutually agreed to part ways, Budenholzer told ESPN.
The Hawks announced the move later Wednesday night.
Budenholzer, the 2014-15 NBA Coach of the Year, and the organization finalized terms of a split Wednesday night.
“I am grateful for the five years that I spent as coach of the Atlanta Hawks and will always cherish the incredible contributions, commitment and accomplishments of the players that I was fortunate enough to work with here,” Budenholzer told ESPN on Wednesday night. “From ownership to management, support staff to the community, I’ll look back with great pride on what we were able to achieve together with the Hawks.”
Source: Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN
Sources: NBA, NBPA Talk Lowering Draft Age Requirement
The NBA and National Basketball Players Association’s conversations on eliminating the one-and-done entry rule have centered on lowering the minimum age requirement no sooner than the 2020 draft, league sources told ESPN.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver and NBPA executive director Michele Roberts have discussed scenarios to end the requirement for American players to wait one year after high school graduation to enter the NBA draft, but no formal agreement could be reached before the NBPA’s executive committee, including president Chris Paul, gather for a meeting at the end of the NBA playoffs in June.
Silver and Roberts have both expressed a desire to change the rule, but it remains to be seen how the process of negotiating a rule change between the league and players will unfold.
Source: Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN