David Stern's Inexcusable Comments

     David Stern has been known for protecting the image of the NBA. He has done things such as make it mandatory that players play at least one year of collegiate basketball before putting their name in the NBA draft [1]. He also instituted a dress code in 2005 which did not allow players to wear jerseys, jeans, large jewelry, and other things associated with the hip hop culture [2]. A lot of this was due to the image blow the NBA took following the, "Malice at the Palace." One of David Stern's main goals in being commissioner of the Nation Basketball Association was to keep the image as clean and as professional as possible. Something recently has hurt this image, and this time it is David Sterns own fault.

     Jim Rome's talk show, The Jim Rome Show, can be heard on over 200 radio stations in the United States and in Canada. He has been involved in many controversies, and also holds many controversial opinions which is why he is such a polarizing figure in the sports talk show world. Rome and Stern have had disputes in the past which is why Stern should have been cautious when answering questions from Jim Rome. Rome asked David Stern about the conspiracy theories surrounding the NBA draft lottery [3]. As Jim Rome correctly pointed out, it is his job to ask questions like that. David Stern took offense to the question and asked Jim Rome if he had stopped beating his wife yet and then went on to insult Rome. What surprised me was that Jim Rome was the one that remained calm and cool in the heat of the moment. Jim Rome has been known for getting into controversies and saying things he should not. He calmly told Stern that he did not think the objection was fair. David Stern then went on to criticize Jim Rome and say how he made a living of asking questions for "cheap thrills." Jim Rome asked a legitimate question that many people have been speculating about. Stern followed by barely addressing the question and simply followed with several ad hominem attacks. Stern said that he had to go talk to someone important and mentioned he had to do an interview with Stephen A Smith. It is important to note that the wording about "beating his wife" was not literal. It was an example of a question that has no good answer which is what Stern felt Rome did.

    These are statements that no commissioner of any sports league, or anyone in a position of power, should say. The problem is not exactly what Stern said, but rather the fact that he should not be saying things like that at all. He should not want his reputation to be that he insults talk show host that ask him questions. He does not have to respond perfectly to every question. However, he cannot act like that in any situation. For a man who has tried terribly hard  to help the image of the NBA, he may have greatly hurt his cause just by a few comments in one interview.

Listen to the interview here

[1]Normally speaking, although players like Brandon Jennings have gone overseas to "side-step" this rule.
[2 ] http://www.nba.com/news/player_dress_code_051017.html
[3]The New Orleans Hornets won the lottery and they are owned by the NBA (recently sold)

No comments:

Post a Comment