How Stern turned the scandal-ridden NBA into a business empire

How Stern turned the scandal-ridden NBA into a business empire
Stern brought the NBA to the Chinese market.If David Stern is one of the greatest managers in the history of professional sports, probably no one will question it.Extremely, I even think that the word “one” can be removed.Some people may think that anyone sitting in Stern’s position can submit a similar answer.After all, since the 1980s, the emergence of generations of stars such as “Magic” Johnson, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, etc., is the only oneThe most important reason for the world.But many people don’t know that when Stern became president in 1984, the NBA is far from the present.In the four major leagues in North America, the NBA lags far behind the NFL and MLB. In the 1980 Lakers and 76ers finals, only video was broadcast on television.The league is scandalous because of violence and drug issues. In 1982, the Los Angeles Times reported that 75% of NBA players took drugs.When Stern took over the NBA scepter, coincided with the “magic” Johnson and Larry Bird fierce confrontation, Jordan entered the league and the rise of ESPN.Stern knows the characteristics of basketball and knows that the success of the league requires not only excellent teams and performance games, but also star-making and publicity.Under his strong impetus, Jordan has become a cultural symbol beyond sports; his vision is not implanted in the United States, and the NBA has gradually developed into a revolutionary alliance under his rule.Today, a quarter of active NBA players come from outside the United States.International players represented by Adetokounmpo shine in the NBA.The data may most intuitively reflect Stern’s contribution.There were 23 teams in the NBA in 1984. When Stern stepped down in 2014, this number reached 30.When he stepped down, the NBA league’s annual revenue has exceeded 5 billion US dollars.In 1984, the NBA and TBS Television signed a two-year rebroadcasting contract with a total value of only $ 20 million.In 2014, the NBA’s broadcast contract with Turner Group / ESPN was as high as $ 24 billion in nine years.The per capita annual income of NBA players has increased from $ 330,000 in the 1984-1985 season to more than $ 8 million today.During Stern’s tenure as president, the NBA set up offices in Africa, Asia Pacific, Canada, Europe, India, and once.In 1984, the number of overseas companies in the NBA was zero.From Jordan’s scoring problem, to Tim Donasi’s referee bribery scandal, to the Auburn Hills Palace Arena fight, Stern has also faced many crises in his 30 years in the NBA.Under his management, the NBA also had two major labor disputes in 1998 and 2011 that led to the shutdown.But this has not affected the overall trend of the alliance’s upward development.The lottery draft, salary cap, top salary, development league and WNBA, these fans are familiar with the system established by Stern; professional players to participate in the Olympic Games, “dream team” swept the world is also inseparable from him.Of course, Stern is by no means perfect. During his tenure, he has caused great controversy around the shady draft, the shady judgment and the dress code.After Stern’s death, many American media people who had personal contact with him also described him as an iron-fisted monarch when he praised his contribution.But no one can deny that Stern is the founder of the modern NBA empire.I do n’t know when to start, the fans boo Stern at the NBA Draft every year becomes a tradition.But in the sky of boos, Stern can always say the name of each rookie with a smile.Perhaps it was this kind of demeanor and self-confidence that made Stern his NBA empire.□ Fu Jingying editor Zhang Yunfeng proofreading Liu Jun