Adam Silver won’t hold it against any player who doesn’t want to go to Walt Disney World Resort when the NBA season (hopefully) returns in July.
The NBA commissioner spoke about a variety of topics Monday during ESPN’s “The Return of Sports” special, including players using their platform to bring more awareness to social injustice.
Of course, with Kyrie Irving reportedly saying he is very much opposed to going to Florida (despite not playing the rest of the season due to shoulder surgery), ESPN’s Mike Greenberg asked Silver what kinds of conversations he’s had with players regarding the return.
“I can only say, it may not be for everyone,” Silver said. “It will entail enormous sacrifice on behalf of those players and for everyone involved, the coaches, the referees. Listen, it’s not an ideal situation. We’re trying to find a way to our own normal in the middle of a pandemic, in the middle of essentially a recession or worse with 40 million unemployed. And now with enormous social unrest in the country. So as we work through these issues, I can understand how some players may feel that it’s not for them. And like you said, it could be for a host of reasons, it may be for family reasons, it may be for health reasons they have, or it may be because they feel, as some players have said very recently, that their time is best spent elsewhere.
“So again, we’re dealing with a Players’ Association representing 450 guys, 22 teams, when you can include the two-way players we’re talking about bringing roughly 375 players down to Orlando, and not surprisingly, there’s not a uniform view among those players. My sense is, we’re going to be able to work through most of those issues during the next few weeks, but as I’ve said, we also have an arrangement with the Players’ Association where if a player chooses not to come, it’s not a breach of his contract. We accept that.”
That likely will put players who have concerns about traveling at ease. And it appears Silver will do what he can to make sure his players are taken care of whether or not they choose to play.