LeBron: NBA ‘decided’ Sarver decision wrong


LeBron James detailed his disappointment at the NBA’s penalty of Phoenix Suns owner Robert Sarver, who wrote “our league absolutely misunderstood this” on Wednesday in a series of social media posts.

Sarver was banned from the NBA for a year and fined $10 million after the league released its findings Tuesday from a 10-month independent investigation into allegations of workplace abuse during Sarver’s tenure as managing partner of the Suns. , which lasted almost two decades.

Sun’s point guard Chris Paulwho also served two terms as president of the National Basketball Players Association, expressed similar sentiments to James, writing, “I feel the sanctions failed to address what we can all agree was horrendous behavior.”

Earlier Wednesday, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver held a press conference in New York after the league’s board of governors meeting and expressed concerns he had expressed from the player base, which is nearly 75% black.

Under the litany of accusations first reported by ESPN last November and confirmed by the law firm’s investigation of Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, Sarver was found to have repeated the N-word at least five times when recounting the statements of others.

“I spoke to a number of players,” Silver said on Wednesday. “Those have been private conversations. I leave it to the players to speak directly how they feel.”

Silver continued to describe his conversations with players as “discouraging” as he said, “I think those players need to see that we keep solving these problems.”

Later Wednesday, Tamika Tremaglio, the executive director of the NBPA, issued a statement saying that “Sarver’s reported actions and behavior are appalling and have no place in our sport or in any workplace.”

Tremaglio added that she “has expressed my position to Adam Silver regarding my views on the extent of the penalty, and that she strongly believes that Mr Sarver should never again hold a leadership position within our league. “

James’ statement reflects his stance from 2014 when the league was investigating alleged racist misconduct at the time LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling.

“There’s no place for Donald Sterling in the NBA — there’s no place for him,” James said before a Miami Heat playoff game against Charlotte. “… They have to take a stand. They have to be very aggressive with it. I don’t know what it will be, but we can’t have that in our league.”

James has spent the last half of his NBA career, entering his 20th season this fall, as a public advocate for social change.

Silver said from a personal standpoint that he was “disbelief” when he was made aware of Sarver’s violations, but that many of the players and coaches in the league he spoke with found the situation all too familiar.

“Look, I think it’s no secret that this is a league where about 80% of our players are black. More than half of our coaches are black,” said Silver. “I’ll say maybe none of them are as shocked as I am, that they’re living their lives, that I don’t think they’re reading this and saying, oh my God, I can’t believe this is happening.”

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