Every sports league has its fair share of issues, but some have more than others. To maintain order, each of the major sports has a commissioner to act as the face of the league and keep the interests of the players, fans, and team owners in mind. If you ask retired NBA players Kevin Garnett and Kendrick Perkins, Adam Silver is the cream of the crop.
Being a commissioner can’t be an easy task, but Silver has handled each obstacle with class since taking over for David Stern. Garnett and Perkins speak very highly of the commish and his efforts to keep moving the sport of basketball forward. The former Boston Celtics teammates reveal why the other leagues should be taking notes.
Kevin Garnett and Kendrick Perkins credit Adam Silver for changing NBA
Although Adam Silver has to protect the interest of several groups of people, he undoubtedly looks out for the players who make the NBA a lot of money.
Many players have a great deal of respect for the commissioner, including Kendrick Perkins and Kevin Garnett. Perkins recently appeared on an episode of SHOWTIME Basketball’s KG: Certified. The two former Celtics discussed the impact Silver has had on the game of basketball since he’s been at the helm.
“We got the best f****** commissioner in sports,” Perkins said. “Adam Silver?” Garnett agreed. “It don’t get no better than him.”
“Just think about it,” Perkins added. “We went from having to wear suits and ties.”
“You can sit on the bench and wear a hoodie with a hat on underneath,” said KG. “With five chains on,” added Perk.
“You looking at Adam Silver, dawg. He changed the game. It’s crazy cause the majority of the players got Adam Silver’s personal number that they can call him directly, and he picks up.”
Kendrick Perkins and Kevin Garnett suggest that Adam Silver genuinely cares about the players and making the NBA the best league it can possibly be.
KG reveals the commissioner wanted to come out of David Stern’s shadow
Adam Silver served as the NBA’s deputy commissioner and Chief Operating Officer for eight years before becoming the commissioner in 2014. David Stern held the position from 1984 to 2014. While Silver had some pretty big shoes to fill, he was up to the task.
Kevin Garnett only played two seasons under Silver, but he has had multiple personal encounters with the commissioner. KG highlighted a telling conversation he had with him recently.
“He came up to every guy at the 75th anniversary,” said Garnett. “We had a little conversation. The first thing he did was, ‘Hey, I want to invite you to come by the office anytime.’ I commended him and said, ‘Man, I did not see this coming from you. I’ve been in those meetings, and I seen you on the stage with Stern and saw how y’all bully balled a lot of stuff. I saw y’all methods.”
“He was like, ‘Well, I’m working to change that. I wanted to come out of Stern’s shadow and do it my way. This is how I see us working. I told you, Kevin. I’m about growing the pie, and that’s my philosophy. I’m never going to argue over this [small pie], but I’m gonna always talk about trying to grow something.”
Garnett added that Silver advised him that the future of the NBA is in good hands and that the league will continue to progress.
“He reassured me that we’re in a great place,” KG said. “He wants ideas on how to grow player development, how to help kids that are dealing with mental health. He’s trying to bring the older generation back and put it in the league somehow.”
What other sports leagues can take from Silver
As all commissioners find out, it’s impossible to please everybody. That’s just a fact of life. However, Adam Silver has done a phenomenal job of doing everything in his power to act in the best interest of all parties involved, not just the decision-makers. Other leagues have struggled with that, including the NFL, where the owners basically run the show.
Silver isn’t perfect by any means, but the public perception of him is far more positive than the other commissioners. He genuinely seems to care about people as opposed to the bottom line. The 59-year-old New York native has helped grow the game globally and has fostered a culture that promotes diversity. Many of the other leagues still have a long way to go.
Kevin Garnett and Kendrick Perkins hit it on the head. Adam Silver is the best commissioner in major league sports today.