Looking at 5 Fixes New NBA Commissioner Adam Silver Must Make
Adam Silver Takes the Reins of the NBA
When Adam Silver became commissioner of the NBA on Feb. 1, 2014, there was no doubting that he had big shoes to fill. This is because the man who just left the job, David Stern, had previously been in charge for 30 years and had helped grow the league that didn't even televise its finals in real time to a multi-billion dollar business. In the meantime he also changed the image fans had of players from looking at many as thugs to looking at nearly all as role models while the NFL stole the role of the league with a hurt player image.
Of course it would be hard for Silver to completely flush the progress that Stern made while commissioner down the drain; in fact it may even be even impossible. This is especially true since Silver has been working for the NBA since 1992 and surely had a helping role in many of the popular policies that the league has adopted in the time that since then. To think that he would be foolish enough to reverse a train that is moving in the right direction would be crazy.
But even with the league going in the right direction it is obvious that Silver will want to put his spin on things, and there are certainly a few positive ideas the new commissioner could make happen for the benefit of the NBA. With this in mind, I have formed a list of five ideas that are both useful and, more importantly, attainable in the near future.
5. Lower the League's Minimum Age to 18
Back in 2005 the NBA made the controversial decision of raising the minimum age to be eligible for the NBA Draft to 19, in effect taking out the option of going pro straight from high school. This rule has absolutely decimated college basketball by creating a culture of players who only go to college for one year because of the rule and also limits fans from watching great athletes who are ready for the pros at 18. Reverting back to the old rules would in effect please both college and professional basketball fans.
4. Allow Advertisements on Game Jerseys
The NBA has talked about allowing small advertisements on jerseys for a long time now, and Silver should make sure it happen as soon as possible. Fans may moan and groan for a few weeks, but when push comes to shove they are still going to come to games and the on-court product will be the same. Ensuring that money from these sales is evenly distributed will benefit all teams and therefore help small market teams become more competitive.
3. Put All 30 Teams In the Draft Lottery
Much discussion has occurred in recent seasons about the extent of tanking in the NBA, but it certainly does occur at some level each year. One way to rid the league of this is to give each team an opportunity to win the No. 1 overall pick in the NBA Draft which will make sure there is no real benefit to finishing last in the NBA. Of course the best and worst team wouldn't have the same shot at the top pick, but this rule would still encourage bottom feeders to fight for the eighth spot in their conference.
2. Establish a Hard Salary Cap
Currently the NBA has a soft salary cap which means owners are allowed to spend over the cap if they are willing to pay a fine. This means that teams like the Brooklyn Nets, Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat whose owners have big money and get big revenues can basically add whoever they want. Changing the rules to make it illegal to go over the cap will make money irrelevant and bring up the overall parity in the league.
1. Make Flopping a Technical Foul
Currently players can be fined minimal amounts if they flop multiple times which really is not deterring anyone from diving. The one way to stop this would be to make it a technical foul which is a bit extreme but would certainly be effective. This one would be tough to enforce, but if you make it reviewable it will be effective and will also serve as a great deterrent.