Jul 12, 2010, 10:02 PM EDT
It wasn’t LeBron’s decision that bothered David Stern, it was “The Decision.”
In press conference in Las Vegas Monday, David Stern said LeBron James was more than free to make any decision he wanted, as were Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade. He credited Miami with clearing the cap space to pull off the coup.
“The 3 players are totally within their rights to talk to each other,” Stern said. “That is not tampering.”
Now, how LeBron James made his announcement… That’s another matter.
“The advice that he received on this was poor…” Stern said. “His honesty and his integrity, I think, shined through. But this decision was ill-conceived.”
Stern was in Vegas for a meeting of the owners. He said out of that that the owners and players are not as far apart on agreeing what the actual numbers are on basketball revenues as the players think.
He was asked about better revenue sharing between the teams to help even out the playing field, and he promised that will be “robust” in the future. It’s needed — the Lakers pull in about $2 million in gross revenue per game, the Memphis Grizzlies and others are at less than $400,000. Throw in the disparity of local television contracts and some teams can easily afford some luxury tax, while others cannot.
But Stern could look around the Thomas and Mack in Las Vegas, see a sold out arena for a second night to watch John Wall and the other guys here, to watch a lot of guys just hoping to make an NBA roster, and realize business is pretty good.