As much as fanbases have their players that they hate beyond reason—whether they are on their own team or on other teams—there is generally one thing that seemingly all NFL fans can agree upon. That is, there is nobody in the game more unlikeable than the commissioner, Roger Goodell.
Even though the league’s owners keep giving Goodell contract extensions with more and more money—and more and more authority—however, his relationship with select owners has certainly gone through some rocky patches. Even some of his closest connections with the likes of Robert Kraft of the New England Patriots and Jerry Jones of the Dallas Cowboys, who have had star players suspended, have produced friction in recent years.
It is with that background in mind that I relay to you the report that some connections with the league owners have, in recent years, made attempts to reach out to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver to gauge his level of interest in jumping ship.
For his part, Silver recently addressed this speculation merely to say that he has not given the notion any thought, neither confirming nor denying that he has indeed been contacted about the possibility of moving over to the NFL.
Silver is experiencing a honeymoon phase similar to that which followed the early portions of Goodell’s tenure, during which their respective leagues so significant growth, in both cases involving ways that didn’t really have a lot to do with them directly. Though I would argue that Silver has had a bigger hand in the NBA’s growth.
As an ESPN article notes, the league’s revenue has increased from $4.8 billion to $9.1 billion (a projected figure) over the course of Silver’s five years as commissioner, which is nearly a 100 percent growth. In terms of team valuations, their worth has skyrocketed from an average of a little over half a billion dollars to now almost $2 billion.
Part of the means of the NBA being able to accomplish this has been through retaining cutting-edge relationships in the technological and business frontiers, embracing sports betting, e-sports, and a variety of other components to which there previously was resistances.
Of course, he was also gifted the LeBron James and Stephen Curry rivalry, which has been an enormous ratings draw. Now that both are in the Western Conference, however, and James’ Los Angeles Lakers are having a bit of a rough go of it, I do wonder how that will affect postseason ratings.