David Stern, the basketball-loving lawyer who took the NBA around the world during 30 years as its longest-serving commissioner and oversaw its growth into a global powerhouse, died Wednesday. He was 77.
Stern suffered a brain hemorrhage on Dec. 12 and underwent emergency surgery. The league said he died with his wife, Dianne, and their family at his bedside.
Stern had been involved with the NBA for nearly two decades before he became its fourth commissioner on Feb. 1, 1984. By the time he left his position in 2014 — he wouldn’t say or let league staffers say “retire,” because he never stopped working — a league that fought for a foothold before him had grown to a more than $5 billion a year industry and made NBA basketball perhaps the world’s most popular sport after soccer.
Sources: NBA ‘angling’ to Cancel Rest of 2020 Season
The NBA suspended its season mid-March after Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert tested positive for COVID-19. A timetable to return isn’t clear as the COVID-19 pandemic continues its rapid spread throughout the United States and the world.
On that note, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst provided the latest thinking inside the league, citing increased pessimism the NBA can resume the 2019-20 campaign:
“The talks between the players union and the league this week, I’ve talked to both sides of this issue, and it is clear that the NBA is angling to set up a deal that enables them to shut the season down.
“Now they don’t have to do that yet, and the way they’re negotiating they’re leaving themselves an option either way, but they’re not having talks about how to restart the league, they’re having financial talks about what would happen if the season shuts down, and I think there is a significant amount of pessimism right now.”
Sources: Bulls Begin Search to Hire New Lead Executive
The Chicago Bulls have embarked on a formal search process to hire a new top executive with full authority on basketball decisions, sources told ESPN.
Among the Bulls’ initial plans will be to seek permission to interview Denver Nuggets general manager Arturas Karnisovas and Toronto GM Bobby Webster, among other candidates, sources told ESPN.
Chicago ownership has discussed the plan with executive VP of basketball operations John Paxson and GM Gar Forman, sources said. Paxson is likely to continue in an advisory role with the franchise; there are expected to be more ownership conversations with Forman about his future, too, sources said.
Source: Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN
Sources: Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett to be Inducted into Hall of Fame
Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett will be inducted into the Naismith Basketball @Hoophall Class of 2020, sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium. Formal announcements will be made on Saturday.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) April 3, 2020
Source: Shams Charania on Twitter