• The Refractory Hour

Is Adam Silver Really the Best Commissioner?

For a long time now Adam Silver has been regarded as the best commissioner in all of sports. And up until a few weeks ago, I would have agreed. But after reading some articles recently I think I have to change my stance. Let me explain.

It started with the social media buzz that if you wanted to order a jersey from the NBA Store you could not put the phrase “Free Hong Kong”. That is absolutely a fact. That immediately tells me that the NBA is still very much in bed with Communist China, during this Pandemic time when most if not all of the US condemns them.

Moving on to the restart in the Orlando bubble, where they are letting players wear approved social injustice statements on their jerseys and have “Black Lives Matter” on the 3 main courts. Very interesting consider the day before the NBA restart an article written by ESPN reporters Steve Fainaru and Mark Fainaru-Wada exposed that there is player abuse and lack of schooling at the NBA China Academies. The article is surprisingly still up on ESPN, so you can read it for yourself. Some of the key highlights are and this is straight from the article, A former league employee compared the atmosphere when he worked in Xinjiang to "World War II Germany. “One American coach who worked for the NBA in China described the project as "a sweat camp for athletes." As for the coaches that worked there they had this to say, “One requested and received a transfer after watching Chinese coaches strike teenage players, three sources told ESPN. Another American coach left before the end of his contract because he found the lack of education in the academies unconscionable: "I couldn't continue to show up every day, looking at these kids and knowing they would end up being taxi drivers," he said.”


What’s even worse is, I get off the golf course last Thursday, get into my car and turn on ESPN Radio NY and there’s Chris Carlin praising Adam Silver, saying how great he is, how smart he is for listening to his players, etc, etc. Then he sweeps this article under rug saying something like they need to clean that up in China. He said there were reports of older players beating up younger players and that a coach was detained. Really Chris? Did you even read the story? It’s sickening how the ESPN on-air personality will never say a derogatory thing about the NBA.


So please tell me Adam, Silver how can you be so much for social injustice here with the jerseys and the court in the states, but ignore what is going on in your NBA China Academies? It’s total Hypocrisy. The NBA is totally fraudulent with stance on social injustice.

How great is Adam Silver when all he really cares about is the 9 figures a year that the NBA makes in China? China the place where the NBA is letting the children that attend their Academies be treat like slaves.

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