Mark Tatum Rumors
NBA deputy commissioner Mark Tatum sent a memo to all 30 teams on Friday reminding them of the guidelines that require each player, coach and training staff member to stand for the anthem — and if they do not, a form of discipline would be in order. Many wondered how the players, especially the outspoken Warriors, would react to this sudden reminder. “That rule has been in there for some time, so it wasn’t meant to prevent anything,” Iguodala said to ESPN. “So when you look at it from that standpoint, you understand that’s just the rule. It’s like having a drug test. You just have to comply with it.”
The NBA league office late Friday sent a memo to teams reinforcing the rule that players and coaches must stand for the national anthem, and suggesting other ways in which teams might address the recent protest movement sweeping across the NFL and other sports, according to a copy of the memo obtained by ESPN.
The memo, distributed by deputy commissioner Mark Tatum, instructs teams that “the league office will determine how to deal with any possible instance in which a player, coach, or trainer does not stand for the anthem.” The memo states that individual teams “do not have the discretion to waive” the rule that players, coaches, and staff must stand for the anthem. The league has the discretion to discipline players who violate the rule.
In the memo, Tatum suggests teams might address the current political climate by having players and coaches give a joint pregame address. “This could include a message of unity and how the team is committed to bringing the community together this season,” the memo states
NBA deputy commissioner Mark Tatum made it pretty clear in a letter to sports commission president and CEO David Gilbert on July 19: If construction on the proposed Quicken Loans Arena transformation project doesn’t begin by Sept. 15, Cleveland won’t be considered to host the 2020 or ’21 NBA All-Star Game. Last week, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled that Cleveland City Council Clerk Pat Britt must accept the petitions submitted by a coalition that opposes tax dollars being used to fund half of the cost of the proposed $140 million upgrade. The next step is determining whether the referendum will be placed on the November ballot, or if it will be part of a special election early in 2018, which would cost Cleveland taxpayers another $763,600.
A Cavs source told Crain’s that the organization hasn’t heard anything official from the league, but the source wasn’t certain that they would, since Tatum’s letter was “very clear.” The sports commission’s Mulhall told us the same. “As you saw, the letter was pretty direct,” he said.
Mark Tatum, the NBA’s COO and the highest-ranking person of color in any of the men’s leagues, reflected that, “Diversity and inclusion are essential to any successful business. Leveraging the mix of talent reflected in this year’s Racial and Gender Report Card is vital to our strategy of inspiring innovation and increasing our connection with fans worldwide. While the report refers to a number of areas where we’ve made progress, it also highlights key opportunities for us, particularly among women in leadership roles. As our league continues to grow globally, we remain committed to recruiting and retaining the best talent who reflect the great diversity of the world we live in.”