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Should David Stern punish player speech?

Roy Hibbert was fined 75 large for one of two reasons:

1. He said something offensive and should be punished in order to deter NBA players from this type of behavior;

and/or

2. He said something offensive and the NBA felt the need to issue a statement (via Roy Hibbert’s checking account) to its corporate partners that it does not share the offensive views expressed by Roy Hibbert.

I suppose there’s a third rationale; one that’s so offensively paternalistic that I’d rather just hope it isn’t the case. That would be:

3. He said something offensive and the NBA felt the need to punish him so that he would think about why what he said was wrong, and change his views accordingly.

Personally, I think it’s a combination of reasons 1 and 2.

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Unrig the Lottery: The Most Obvious (And Important) Hoop Idea

Tom Benson and David Stern (Photo by The Sporting News)

The New Orleans Hornets have claimed victory in the Anthony Davis sweepstakes, winning the NBA Draft Lottery on Wednesday night despite having only a 13.7% chance of getting the first pick. Is anyone really surprised?

The NBA–run by larger than life commissioner David Stern, who presides over the lottery and announces the selection order after its determined in private–still owns the Hornets. Stern trotted out Tom Benson, who has agreed to buy the team and keep it in NOLA, to be the franchise’s face for the nationally televised lottery show, but Benson doesn’t own the team yet and probably shouldn’t have been there. The whole thing would’ve felt more genuine if Adam Silver had been there representing the Hornets. Continue reading

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