On Wednesday, NBA commissioner Adam Silver faced the music and appeared in front of the press to explain the suspension handed down to Phoenix Suns owner Robert Sarver this week. The NBA had concluded a year-long investigation into allegations of racism and sexism within the organization perpetuated by Sarver, and found that he did, in fact, do all the things he was accused of. But the investigation also (somehow) found Sarver's words and actions were not motivated by racist or sexist prejudices. It is partially for that reason that Sarver was banned for only one year and fined $10 million, rather than a more severe multi-year suspension or even being forced to sell his franchise as Donald Sterling was back in 2014.
Here's a collection of the quotes from the press conference.
In fairness to Silver, this was never going to be a good press conference given the general outcry to force Sarver to sell the team. Part of his gig is being the fall man when things don't happen the way people expect them to, regardless of circumstance. And as the commissioner noted, he alone does not have the power to make Sarver sell and ultimately he is an employee of the other owners.
The strangest part of all is that Silver, by all accounts, appeared to be uncomfortable and unprepared for all these questions. It was predictable what this press conference was going to be like and it didn't seem Silver was ready to answer the many, many questions reporters had about the consequences Sarver is facing compared to the severity of his actions.
The widely-held opinion after all that's transpired is that the league fumbled this one bad. It's hard to disagree.