Blog Entry

David Stern: NBA to look at contraction

Posted on: August 14, 2011 7:32 pm
Edited on: August 15, 2011 1:17 pm
Posted by Ben Golliverdavid-stern

The NBA currently has thirty teams, but the league's commissioner, David Stern, seems open to the possibility that that number of franchises could shrink in the future.

Speaking on an podcast, Stern stated that there is some interest in contraction from both the league and players sides and that the subject will be picked up after the current Collective Bargaining Agreement negotiations are completed.

"[Contraction] is not a subject that we're against," Stern said. "In fact, when you talk about revenue sharing, a number of teams have said that if you have a team that is perpetually going to be a recipient, aren't you better off with the ability to buy them in? Because between the revenue sharing and the split of international and the TV money, we could almost buy them in with their own money.

"The players actually have been heard to suggest that as well, which was interesting because that means they are suggesting that we eliminate 30 jobs, or the potential for 30 jobs. So we've said to the players, you know, 'Give us the right to contract, let's agree upon what the basis will be. Let's make this deal and then let's continue to look at that subject.'"

One obvious hurdle to contraction, Stern acknowledged, is the selection of which team or teams would be put on the chopping block.

"If you look for volunteers," Stern said. "There aren't many teams raising their hand."

Stern explained that folding a team is not something that he could unilaterally decide to do and that any such decision would have to take into account the interests of the ownership groups.

"I do represent 30 owners," Stern said. "[Saying to an owner] 'I'm here to tell you that I think you should go out of business and no longer own a team' is something that needs to be done pursuant to a plan. We'll see how that works after we make a [CBA] deal and the revenue sharing deal."

Three oft-discussed contraction candidates are the New Orleans Hornets, which the NBA itself runs, the Sacramento Kings, whose ownership group is struggling and recently failed to relocate to Anaheim, and the Charlotte Bobcats, who have struggled financially after the city's previous tenant, the Hornets, relocated.

Stern argued that the Hornets will continue to be a profitable franchise and New Orleans will be a viable city going forward.
"New Orleans is actually going to be a top-15 grossing team when it has its 10,000 season tickets and the like," Stern said. "Together with an expression of support from the state [of Louisiana], it's going to be an interesting team that I'm not sure is a candidate for contraction." 

Stern also said it was simply too early to render a verdict on Sacramento and the Kings.  

"I just don't want to get involved in discussion of individual teams," Stern said. "Right now we're working very hard with Mayor Johnson who has put together a plan that seems to suggest that a new arena would be a huge economic incentive -- $7 billion over 30 years -- and has been able to generate support for the project from the entire region. So let's see how that goes before we start talking about contraction."

He also noted that Sacramento has until April 2012 to put together an arena deal. 

Stern made the Bobcats sound safe as well.
"We have a long-term lease of a brand new building and we have a very unfortunate launch of that expansion franchise," Stern said. "Michael Jordan is leading... what's the opposite of an excavation? He is digging out, but he's building up the franchise. Sponsorships are up, tickets are up, an unfortunate TV deal is being reworked on an ongoing basis. I think Charlotte will be a candidate for revenue sharing in its current format, no question about it. North Carolina -- we're going to abandon it and say they're not supporting basketball?"

Lastly, Stern mostly dismissed the possibility of merging two current teams into one.

"We'll examine all of that but our individual owners are very committed to their cities," Stern said.

Since: Aug 17, 2011
Posted on: August 28, 2011 3:57 pm

David Stern: NBA to look at contraction

I'm 6'5"......LMAO...and I was pointing out how retar.ded the statement, and ultimately the post, was to begin with.

Since: Aug 20, 2011
Posted on: August 20, 2011 11:35 am

David Stern: NBA to look at contraction

Contract California teams because there are too many? So they should contract a team in market 2 and a team in market 5.  Both of which draw great crowds and I know the Warriors make money and have a great fan base.  So lets contract them.  And leave shit teams that none cares about like Minnesota, New Orleans, Charlotte, Atlanta, Milwaukee, Toronto, and Memphis.  Mostly in crappy small markets, and some in crappy arenas.  The Clippers play in Staples and the Warriors in Oracle.  You can read anywhere and you wont hear a complaint about either of those building needing help.  Oh also..Doesnt California have the largest population of any stae? Isnt California the 3rd largest stae size wise? Kinda makes sense to me they would have 4 (not 5) teams.  I think it makes less sense that Florida has 3 football teams (same as California)  or 2 HOCKEY teams?? same as california.  After all nothing says hockey more than 90 degree heat in March and Palm Trees. 

Since: Nov 23, 2007
Posted on: August 19, 2011 1:21 pm

David Stern: NBA to look at contraction

I actually think contraction is a good idea.  When there was money to be made, the NBA added more teams.  The Orlando Magic, Miami Heat, Memphis Grizzlies, and some others all started out this way.  Now that money is scarce, It should be ok to have a few teams shut down for a couple seasons, and come back when things are more ironed out.  Teams like the Clippers, Bucks, Kings, Timberwolves, and Wizards would be shoe in's.  Break the teams down and give them the option to go overseas or another league, since the owners are obviously not going to budge...  its ashame, but this is the state of the NBA today.  David Stern has alot to do with why the NBA is supposedly 'broke' by trying to do too much too fast. 

Since: Jan 1, 2007
Posted on: August 18, 2011 7:40 pm

David Stern: NBA to look at contraction

I don't know what is this milwawaukee place?  You may be right....It may be in Mississippi.  I doubt it's in Missississippi though.
Either you are really short or that just went way over your head...

Since: Aug 17, 2011
Posted on: August 17, 2011 12:44 pm

David Stern: NBA to look at contraction

I don't know what is this milwawaukee place?  You may be right....It may be in Mississippi.  I doubt it's in Missississippi though.

Since: Oct 21, 2010
Posted on: August 17, 2011 2:03 am

David Stern: NBA to look at contraction

Isn't paying mediocre players bloated contracts and giving them way more than they deserve the OWNER"S FAULT?  How is that the fault of the players.  If the business you work at overpays an executive, is that the rest of the employees faults or is that the owner's fault?  Don't believe all the BS spouted by the league and their owners.  They are the reason a deal can't get done.  Why should the players take pay the owners can make another BILLION?

Since: Oct 21, 2010
Posted on: August 17, 2011 2:00 am

David Stern: NBA to look at contraction

If there are so many teams losing money, why wouldn't there be volunteers to "contract" the league to fewer teams?  If they're losing money, what is their incentive to keep the team?? It's all the spin put on by David Stern.  Sure, the players are millionaires, but the owners are all BILLIONAIRES!  This is not the type of business where you can just grab anyone off the street to work the job.  These guys have specialized skills that very few people in the world have.  They deserve the money.  The owners are all old, rich guys trying to make a buck off other people's talents.  I understand they have to make money, but they make a lot more than they say and a lot more than the me!

Since: Sep 11, 2007
Posted on: August 16, 2011 1:30 pm

David Stern: NBA to look at contraction

It makes sense to axe the Clippers as long as Donald Sterling has any part of the team.  The only reason he's not the worst owner in pro sports is that McCourt hasn't been booted and Al Davis hasn't done the world a favor and died.

Since: Aug 15, 2011
Posted on: August 15, 2011 7:21 pm

David Stern: NBA to look at contraction

that makes sense if you want to win games. however this culture is star driven and if there are too many good players then the "scoring" load will be "too evenly" distributed. will we ever stand for a NBA scoring chanmp wiht an 18.3 point average. naw! But I'm for it. maybe we only need 10 on a team, if they are all NBA level  players

Since: Aug 15, 2011
Posted on: August 15, 2011 7:16 pm

David Stern: NBA to look at contraction

Clippers have good attendance . why contract one of the teams that is not failing? makes no sense. according to the owners the nba loses $300 mil a year. find the money pits and give them a bus ticket home.

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