NBA commissioner Adam Silver said the league “could do better” when it comes to diversity.
Silver acknowledged in a pre-game press conference that the league “can do better” when it comes to hiring black head coaches.
“I don’t see a way to run a league where the league office, the commissioner, dictates to a team who they should or shouldn’t hire. Or who they should and shouldn’t fire, frankly, ”Silver said in response to a question about whether the league should institute its own version of the Rooney rule – the NFL policy that teams must interview people from color for coaching positions.
Last year several black coaches were fired or resigned, including Doc Rivers, who parted ways with the Los Angeles Clippers this week. There are five other head coaching openings in Philadelphia, Indiana, New Orleans, Houston and Oklahoma City. White Coaches have filled previous openings this season with the Knicks, Nets and Bulls.
“We’re in talks with all of these teams to make sure there’s a diverse roster of candidates,” said Silver, adding, “Let’s talk after we have filled these six positions and see where we are because I know we can do better. ”
Silver also told the press conference that many details for next season were still pending. He reiterated that the earliest start would be Christmas – “a traditional tent day for the league” – but was more likely to start in January. He also said the league’s goal was to have fans in the seats, even before a vaccine was widely distributed, “depending on some further progress.”
“Rapid testing can be the key here,” Silver said.