Thursday , Aug , 01 , 2013 Featured Guest Journalist

Top 10 David Stern Mistakes As NBA Commissioner

Can anyone say ego tripping, CP3 veto, and rule changes?

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: We know David Stern would like us to only remember the good, but here’s a look back over his biggest blunders.  


Yes, David Stern globalized the NBA and grew the bottom-line for executives and players, but he also dropped the ball on a number of issues too. Here is a list of Stern’s Top 10 biggest bloopers, blunders, and flat out mistakes. Some involve his personality, while others focus on his policies and implementation of rules. All are definitely 100% Stern and 100% wrong.

#10 Biggest Ego

The fact that David Stern is stepping down as commissioner, but will still be employed as a consultant by the NBA speaks volumes. He can’t let go. He is currently in the middle of a 15 month transition to his successor Adam Silver, which looks a lot more like a David Stern farewell tour.

#9 Under-23 Olympic Rule

This was the idea that Olympic Basketball should be a 23-under competition. David Stern went public with this brilliant idea without consulting with anyone throughout the league or his own colleagues. He wanted to prove he could still sell a big idea and quickly ran for cover when the blow-back from this grew out of control, allowing Adam Silver to absorb most of the fallout.

#8 Anti-Flopping Rule

This is the rule Stern just enacted last year to try and avoid players from flopping on potential charge calls. This penalty is handed out after the game and the player is not told what particular play during the game incurred the penalty. This is seen largely as a cosmetic rule change that will do little to nothing to stop flopping and more of a hollow rule.

#7 Concerned with his Legacy

Stern is well aware that he will be regarded as the driving force that globalized the NBA. He is perhaps a little too aware and proud of this fact. Stern has kept one eye on his legacy throughout most of his career, weighing decisions as much against how it would make him look personally as he reflected on what was judicious.

#6 Power Hungry

One thing that league executives agree on is that power was consolidated under Stern. They are hoping to more localize that power in the post-Stern NBA. The problem with this is that Adam Silver is Stern’s right-hand man and will certainly not speak out against any Stern policies as of yet.

#5 Anti-Player Commissioner

It is no secret that David Stern was not liked by the players or Player’s Association. Stern’s lack of concern with player’s health and well-being was no where more pointed than in last years condensed season. Questions were raised by players and the players association about the potential for injury with such a small amount of rest between games. Stern was not concerned. I’m betting Chicago and Derek Rose wish he had cared a little more.

#4 Manipulative

David Stern appointing Adam Silver as his replacement is like Fidel Castro stepping down so his brother Raul Castro can takeover. Stern made sure the subsequent commissioner owed him and agreed with him on every detail of NBA labor issues and league regulations. This is simply David Stern 2.0, the Silver edition.

#3 Absurd Penalties

From fining Amare Stoudemire 50,000 over a tweet to Kobe being fined $100,000 for a homophobic slur at a ref, David Stern is known for arbitrary penalties. He once fined Mark Cuban $500,000 for criticizing refs when they clearly goofed the call and then turned around and penalized Metta World Peace with a mere seven game suspension for a vicious elbow that could have possibly ended James Harden’s career. Don’t look to Stern for judiciousness.

#2 Anti-Union Commissioner

Stern established himself as clearly an anti-player and anti-union commissioner during negotiations in the 2011-2012 season. He not only stood against the players, but also insulted many of their negotiation tactics.

#1 Over-Involvement in Trades:

People will not soon forget the fact the Stern vetoed the trade of Chris Paul to the Lakers in 2011 only to allow the trade of Dwight Howard to the Lakers in 2012. This raised the question of the NBA’s involvement with Charlotte playing a role in the decision. Stern claims no harm no foul, but many still scratch their heads at the unprecedented move.

Photo Credit: WENN.

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