NBA at 75: Adam Silver says game can ‘change the world’ | Sports

NEW YORK — (EDITOR’S NOTE: The season-long birthday celebration of the NBA’s seventy fifth anniversary is winding down. As a part of The Associated Press collection at the NBA’s first 75 years, Commissioner Adam Silver wrote this essay on what the league may seem like 25 years from now when it celebrates its one centesimal anniversary.)

What will the NBA seem like at 100? While it’s tricky to expect the long run 365 days from now, let by myself 25, I know what is going to stay unchanged: Our bedrock theory that “sports have the power to change the world.”

Our teams and players will continue to use the game of basketball to teach lifelong values, give back to our communities and bring awareness to critically important societal issues.

We will also continue to embrace being a global league. Our games are distributed in more than 200 countries and territories, our social media community exceeds 2 billion people, and 25% of the players in our league grew up outside of the United States. The NBA’s reach is expansive, though in many ways we are just scratching the surface in terms of our international growth.

I expect live sports and entertainment to remain special. There is something truly remarkable about 20,000 people of different backgrounds gathering together in an arena to enjoy a shared experience. What makes NBA games unique — the proximity to the players, the fast-paced nature of the game and the energy derived from being around other people — will be as vital in 25 years as it is today.

What I do foresee changing is how fans around the world engage with the NBA. Today’s fans can watch NBA basketball on their high-definition televisions or just as easily on their smartphones. But in 25 years, this notion of watching games on a “screen” is also beside the point. Games will seem in any dimension — three-dimensionally — whether or not on a lounge flooring or in a ballroom. Watching basketball anyplace may really feel like you’re in an area surrounded by way of 1000’s of fellow lovers.

The game on the court will evolve as well, as a whole new group of players builds on the greatness of the generations that came before them. We may see different kinds of schedule formats and tournaments that create new league traditions. And perhaps, once air travel becomes faster, we will have franchises outside of North America.

And if we’re extra fashionable at our one centesimal anniversary than we’re lately, I do know we will be able to have remained true to our undertaking to encourage and fix folks in all places throughout the recreation of basketball.

Adam Silver is commissioner of the National Basketball Association.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This subject matter might not be revealed, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed with out permission.

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