NBA Commissioner Adam Silver Addresses Trail Blazers Sale, Damian Lillard Trade Request
Plus, what the league's new load-management rules could mean for Portland.
Following the NBA’s annual Board of Governors meetings in New York on Wednesday, commissioner Adam Silver gave his usual press conference. This time last year, the focus was almost entirely on the findings of the league’s investigation into then-Suns owner Robert Sarver. This time around, Silver was touting a brand-new “Player Participation Policy” designed to curb teams resting healthy players in nationally televised games, among other things.
In addition to the new policy, Silver was asked about two topics that directly involve the Trail Blazers: the ongoing uncertainty about the timing of a sale of the franchise from Paul Allen’s trust, and the optics of Damian Lillard’s still-unresolved trade request.
Silver was asked by Wall Street Journal reporter Rachel Bachman, who has done extensive reporting on the Blazers’ ownership situation, whether the league has considered mandating a sale. Here’s the commissioner’s response, in its entirety:
Later, longtime national NBA writer Howard Beck, who (shameless plug alert) was on my podcast last week, asked about this summer’s public trade requests from Lillard out of Portland and James Harden out of Philadelphia. Here’s Silver’s response:
“In terms of trade demands, of course, don’t like them. As a league, want players and teams to honor their contracts. And I’m watching both the situation in Portland and Philadelphia, and hope they get worked out to the satisfaction of everyone before the season starts. And I’m glad that things seem to have settled down somewhat, at least in terms of public discourse.”
Nothing earth-shattering on either front, but it’s worth breaking down where those stories currently stand, in light of the commissioner of the NBA commenting on the record about them, as well as getting into the implications of the new load-management policy and how it could affect the Blazers.