NBA commissioner Adam Silver said in an interview with ESPN Radio’s Mike and Mike on Wednesday that he thinks LaVar Ball “will settle down” once his son, Lonzo Ball, is drafted and that he’s not concerned the NBA has turned into a two-team league.
Silver credited LaVar Ball for his promotional skills, calling his ability to general publicity “quite incredible.” But he said he has no plans to talk to Ball, who has made numerous headlines with provocative comments. In fact, the commissioner said he has only had to speak to one player’s father during his time in the NBA — “in a very polite way.”
Lonzo Ball, however, will be judged by his ability on the court and not his father’s promotional ability, Silver said.
“I think here, if I were an NBA team looking at Lonzo Ball, I’m not sure how much consideration I would give to his father. I think ultimately the issue is, how much game does Lonzo have, how great a player can he be.
“I think his dad will invariably settle down once his son is drafted and a team has the appropriate discussions with him. So I’m not concerned about that,” Silver said.
With the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers set to meet in a third consecutive NBA Finals, Silver also was asked whether he was concerned about the NBA’s competitive balance.
“It’s just hard for me to fathom how there becomes this perception that at the moment there are only two teams that are truly competitive in the league. I just don’t believe it,” he said, adding that “these things have a way of working themselves out over time,” especially when teams draft well.
He also pointed out that the Cavaliers and Warriors have a long way to go before they can be considered dynasties.
“So, when I hear people say that these are now the two teams that are dynasties. You know, think back, you guys know the history. We have the Lakers and Celtics — the Celtics have won 17 championships, Lakers 16 — that’s almost half of all championships won in the NBA by those two teams. Now [the Cavs and Warriors] are being called dynasties. One, [Cleveland] before last year had never won in the history of the NBA. Golden State hadn’t won in 40 years.
“These are the two teams now that are playing and everybody’s saying, ‘Now they’re dynasties.’ So they have a lot of winning to do before I think they should be declared dynasties in the way that the Celtics and Lakers dominated for so many years, or even San Antonio with their five championships or the Bulls with their six championships.”