Many of you know I am an avid basketball fan; and in the past four years I have grown to love the NBA. I feel some sort of obligation to write in light of the drama surrounding Donald Sterling and his racist remarks made public by TMZ. (Most of you must have caught wind of this because it even made my local news- the NBA never makes the local news- especially when it is NHL play-off time). I suppose the sense of obligation stems from a couple of sources:
A) I’ve been fortunate to work with/for/alongside a number of sports organizations that believe in the power of sport to bring positive change to individuals & communities. The NBA Commissioner’s zero tolerance of racism (a lifetime ban of doing business w/ the NBA & a fine of $2.5 million) will make its mark far outside the walls of the NBA I’m sure.
B) My work in human resources often leaves me to examine why people either work in a certain job, or work for a particular company. I’ve been fascinated by the comments made by players, owners, fans, and coaches in the NBA that have supported the Commissioner’s harsh penalty. It is beautiful to hear people (in all layers of the league) unite to say they are proud to be a part of/ work for/ support the NBA. This is a rarity in my experience; how amazing for the decision to unite a powerful group of owners, a strong & vocal players union, coaches from various franchises & a global fan base. It is inspiring to know that tough decisions are being made to hold up the morality of a multi-million dollar business. I’ve always thought it would be amazing to work for the NBA because I think they run a fascinating business; now I’m even more certain it would be a great company for which to work. Maybe one fine day 🙂
I hope this action taken by the NBA is one more step in eradicating racism in our beautiful world.