Report: NBA Commissioner Adam Silver Received Inquiries to Switch to the NFL

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Updated: February 14, 2019
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Let’s start this by stating the obvious: Adam Silver isn’t going anywhere as commissioner of the NBA.

In fact, Silver recently signed a five-year contract extension that runs through the 2023-24 season.

But, according to a report by ESPN, Silver was approached by numerous Fortune 500 companies, as well as an intermediary of an owner of an NFL team.

In case you’re not aware, while it’s mostly been smooth sailing in Silver’s first five years leading the NBA, the same can’t be said for NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.

While owners are taking in record profits under Goodell, the NFL has taken on several public relations black eyes over the past several years.

Among the issues that Goodell faced: inconsistent discipline for domestic violence incidents by players, the controversial “Bountygate” and “Deflategate” investigations, player safety and the welfare of retired players who are dealing with mental and physical issues, not having a consistent response to certain players kneeling for the National Anthem, and – most recently – a controversial non-pass interference call in the NFC Championship game that likely influenced the outcome of that game.

Meantime, under Silver, the NBA has enjoyed labor peace and increased revenues (that the players are reaping the benefits of). Silver has also led the way among the four major sports in the United States on the e-gaming front, as well as the sports betting industry. As it’s becoming legal in more and more states, watch for wagering to become a more significant part of games and broadcasts. Silver was the first major sports commissioner to embrace this evolved thinking on gambling. He’s also actively involved in making tweaks to the NBA Draft process – from the minimum age requirement, to the way the lottery is staged.

As for that report that an NFL team sent out feelers to Silver, it allegedly came in August 2017 – four months before Goodell signed a contract extension himself. Silver is said to have immediately turned down the offer.

“I’ll just say I have not given it any thought,” Silver said to ESPN, regarding the outside opportunities presented to him. “I feel very fortunate to be in this position. As a longtime fan, as a longtime league employee, the opportunity to become the commissioner of this league was beyond anything I even ever dreamed of as a kid.”

Since Silver took over from David Stern on February 1, 2014, league revenues nearly doubled – from $4.8 billion to $9.1 billion, while the average value of the 30 teams has increased by 267 percent according to Forbes.

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