HoopsHype Adam Silver rumors

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April 17, 2015 Updates

The strongest action to come out of the owners meeting: the NBA starting next season will reduce the number of back-to-backs and four games in five days that teams play by doing a better job of scheduling, handling the time off during the All-Star break and potentially extending the season by a week. "Those are changes we can make immediately for next year. … That's real progress for next season," Silver said. Teams on average will play 16 back-to-backs and the number of four games in five days will be reduced to on average one per team next season, Silver said. Teams played an average of 19 back-to-backs and 2.3 four games in five days this season, according to a schedule analysis at nbastuffer.com. USA Today Sports

The NBA will also explore the possibility of reducing the number of preseason games while ensuring sufficient practice time and starting the season earlier for the 2016-17 season. USA Today Sports

The NBA is not close to making changes to its playoff format, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said Friday after the league and its owners wrapped up two days of meetings in New York. "It's early days in these discussions," Silver said. "This was the first serious meeting among all our board members on this subject, and the result was I would say inconclusive as to where we should ultimately go. It's not to say we don't think there should be a change. This is one of these issues that's going to require a fair amount of discussion and study, not just directly among the owners in the big room but with committees as well." USA Today Sports

Silver also said draft lottery reform is not coming until at least after the 2016-17 season because owners want to see how the significant increase in the salary cap because the new TV deal impacts the construction of teams. "There's still a sense we need to make a change but until we know what the team behavior is going to be with all this new cap room, we hold it and wait and look holistically at the whole system," he said. USA Today Sports

April 13, 2015 Updates

PepsiCo has signed a five-year NBA deal, making it one of the league’s largest sponsors and ending a 29-year relationship between Coke and the NBA. Sports Business Daily

April 10, 2015 Updates

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver is intrigued by the model of legalized sports betting surrounding the English Premier League and other soccer leagues abroad, which “don’t participate by law in the handling of sports betting” but reap the rewards of encouraging it. He indicated that applying the system to the NBA, if legal, would have benefits. The Fields of Green

The commissioner pointed to the growing trend of proposition bets, where bettors are given in-game opportunities for “immediate transactions” with “instantaneous odds,” as a major factor in the development of an illegal U.S. sports betting market that he estimated at $400 billion. Though that number is probably lower – between $88 billion and $380 billion by some estimates – the prevalence of prop bets cannot be denied: According to Silver, 80 percent of sports betting in Europe is on “in-play” action. The Fields of Green

Heat officials learned of the story via news reports, and were dumbfounded that the league would not have first spoken, at least as a courtesy, to the one franchise actually affected by any NBA/Cuba relationship. Heat owner Micky Arison and club president Pat Riley declined a Miami Herald interview request Wednesday, but another team executive told us, “The NBA never consulted with us. This was undertaken unilaterally. The minute we found out we registered our vehement objection to the league office. Neither the Heat nor any personnel will be participating.” Miami Herald

And now the franchise deals with an NBA/Cuba situation a different Heat source said “seems political.” Longtime former NBA commissioner David Stern was extremely active in Democratic politics and a major financial contributor throughout his years in office. New commissioner Adam Silver also was an ardent early supporter of Obama and has donated to the party — the political leanings at the highest level of the NBA perhaps suggesting a climate that would lead to a goodwill tour as a show of support for Obama’s new policy of thawing relations with Cuba. The four-day event could be a precursor to further league involvement with Cuba, such as exhibition games scheduled there. Miami Herald

Cruise stock prices spiked upward when Obama announced his thawing policy toward Cuba. People like Arison immediately imagined their majestic ships flowing lucratively in and out of Cuban ports, ferrying monied tourists eager to explore the exotic island so near yet so off-limits for so long. That could be another delicate spot for Arison, the idea that increasingly normalized relations with Cuba could be very good for Carnival and his already enormous bank account – but could also lead many Heat fans to angrily consider those profits to be Castro-dirty. Miami Herald

April 8, 2015 Updates
March 20, 2015 Updates

Silver, who was in Houston on Thursday for the Rockets’ championship team reunion and celebration, said uncertainty about the impact of the dramatic increase in the salary cap from $63 million to an estimated $90 million in the summer of 2016 would make it difficult to change the lottery system. “A new wrinkle is the fact that we’re not going to have smoothing and so this is a new issue for the league office and the teams,” Silver said in his first comment about the relationship of the union decision and the draft lottery revisions. “There’s clearly a consensus that we need to change and make an adjustment to existing draft lottery- the majority of teams voted for that last board meeting. It just requires a super majority. Houston Chronicle

March 17, 2015 Updates

Naturally, there is a concern that this dreamy idea would only lead to nightmare scenarios: Miami against Portland in the first round, perhaps, with Golden State in the second round. It would create a difficult travel schedule, especially in 2-2-1-1-1 seven-game series formats. Travel is much easier and luxurious for teams with chartered flights, but Silver is "focused on the parade of horribles you keep hearing." "We have to look at that as well and see statistically — what's the likelihood of that happening," Silver said. "But it's a balance. There will be no perfect solution here." That cross-country travel is a concern. Not only during the playoffs but during the regular season. Silver said any discussion of a difference playoff system would include discussion of a more balanced schedule were teams "roughly played each other the same amount of times." USA Today Sports

March 16, 2015 Updates

However, not once during Silver's whirlwind tour — that also included a luncheon at the local rotary club — did the topic of a potential NBA work stoppage in 2017 arise in conversation. "Believe it or not — I can't speak for the union or anything — but it's not something I'm talking to teams about yet," Silver said. "I think it's premature." Recently, the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) made the expected decision to reject the league's proposal to smooth out the rising salary cap. The NBA's new media rights deals, worth more than $2.6 billion per year, are expected to take form in the 2016-17 season as well as increase the salary cap. By "smoothing," the league intended to avoid a dramatic spike in the cap in 2016-17 and progressively spread the money over the first few years of the new TV deal. Indianapolis Star

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