Tim Frank Rumors
James created a buzz by wearing a black carbon-fiber mask to protect his broken nose Thursday in a victory against the New York Knicks. But the league has requested James change to a more traditional clear mask when the Miami Heat host the Orlando Magic on Saturday night. “It is our understanding LeBron used the black mask because a clear one he was comfortable with wasn’t ready,” NBA spokesman Tim Frank said.
In the first sign of a major change in the NBA landscape, new basketballs bearing the insignia of Adam Silver will debut for Saturday’s games. Commissioner David Stern serves his final day Friday in the league’s New York offices, retiring after 30 years, before Silver takes over. According to NBA spokesman Tim Frank, teams were given the Silver-inscribed balls — fresh off the factory line – two months ago “to break in.” Teams have practiced with the new balls, but not until tomorrow — when they host the Heat on the eve of the Super Bowl — will the Knicks use them in a game.
NBA executive president of global marketing partnerships Mark Tatum is in line to become the NBA’s deputy commissioner under incoming commissioner Adam Silver, a person with knowledge of the situation told USA TODAY Sports. The person requested anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly until the announcement is official. NBA spokesman Tim Frank declined comment. The move needs to be approved by NBA owners, but a decision such as this wouldn’t progress to this point unless Silver, the deputy commissioner who takes over for commissioner David Stern this week, knew Tatum would be approved.
It did not take long on Saturday night for fans and commentators at Madison Square Garden to realize something was amiss between the Knicks and the Atlanta Hawks. Their uniforms looked alike. Too alike. The Knicks have worn their new orange alternate jerseys four times already this season, but in each previous outing, the other team arrived wearing a contrasting shade. Not the Hawks. The result was a jumble of blood red versus burnt orange that became an exercise in facial recognition, looking twice, squinting, guessing: Which ones are the Hawks? According to the N.B.A. rule book, the home team is mandated to wear light-colored jerseys, and the visitors dark jerseys, unless otherwise approved. This would explain Atlanta’s uniform choice. “Neither team was at fault,” Tim Frank, the N.B.A.’s vice president for basketball communications, said. “The Knicks orange has been designated as a light alternate home uniform. Going forward, we’ll ensure that the opponent wears a more distinguishing color uniform when the Knicks wear orange.”
Tim Frank, the NBA’s senior vice president for basketball communications, could not offer clarity on what measures would be taken to keep the Thunder organization safe. Citing league policy, Frank said the NBA does not comment on security procedures. “Obviously we are aware of the situation in Syria and are taking all necessary precautions to ensure the safety of our teams and staff,” Frank said.
The NBA is expected to make a major change to its traditional Finals schedule, ending the 2-3-2 format and returning to the 2-2-1-1-1 game rotation used in all other playoff rounds, multiple sources told ESPN.com. The league’s competition committee has voted to recommend the change to the league’s board of directors. “The idea was raised at the competition committee and was well-received and the committee ultimately unanimously voted to recommend the change in format,” NBA spokesman Tim Frank said Sunday.