NBA Commissioner Adam Silver thinks resting is one of the league’s biggest problems, and he’s looking at various ways to limit that.
According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Adam Silver and the NBA’s Competition Committee has submitted several proposals to the league’s Board of Governors, with the biggest points being draft lottery reform and teams resting players.
Last year, a handful of teams rested their star players during nationally televised games, and the decision to do that was a direct result of the league’s schedule. Back-to-backs and playing three games in four nights left players drained, and it was the organization’s choice to sit them so they could be as healthy as possible for the postseason.
Silver sees stars resting as such an issue because the league isn’t giving the fan the best product. Everyone in this country works hard for their money, and sometimes they spend it on going to see LeBron James. What if that person lives in Memphis, a city where the Cavaliers travel just once per season. If James sits, that person would, expectedly, be upset.
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Going forward, Silver is going to encourage teams to rest players during home games, but also discourage them from doing so on nationally televised games. Additionally, the commissioner will be able to fine the organizations who are “sitting multiple players outside of unusual circumstances in a single game,” and also resting uninjured players during games on ESPN, ABC or TNT.
The other somewhat monumental proposal is fixing the draft lottery to eliminate tanking, which is when bad teams, for lack of a better phrase, lose on purpose. Having the worst record possible gives that franchise the best chance at landing the first overall pick in the following draft.
Under the current lottery, the NBA’s worst team has a 25 percent chance of landing the top pick, with the second- and third-worst having 19.9 and 15.6 percent, respectively. If this plan were to pass, all three teams would drop to 14 percent each. The league would implement it as early as 2019.
Adam Silver has done an outstanding job since taking over for David Stern. Again, he’s tackling some of the biggest issues that people both in and out of the league take exception to. Personally, if resting players and the draft lottery are your highest-priority problems, I think it’s safe to say the league is in a great spot.
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