David L. Stern
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David Joel Stern (born September 22, 1942) is the former commissioner of the National Basketball Association. He started with the Association in 1966 as an outside counsel, joined the NBA in 1978 as General Counsel, and became the league's Executive Vice President in 1980. He became Commissioner in 1984, succeeding Larry O'Brien. He is credited with increasing the popularity of the NBA in the 1990s and 2000s. Stern has served on the Rutgers University Board of Overseers and is a Chair Emeritus of the Board of Trustees of Columbia University. He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. On October 25, 2012, Stern announced that he would step down as NBA commissioner on February 1, 2014, 30 years to the day after beginning his tenure as commissioner. His deputy, Adam Silver, is his successor. On February 14, 2014, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced that Stern would be a member of its 2014 induction class. In 2016, he became a member of the FIBA Hall of Fame.
Stern has been at the center of multiple controversies during his time as commissioner, with a noticeably more frequent trend in the later years of his tenure. During the 1985 NBA Draft Lotterywhich of these clubs would get the 1st pick onwards up to the 7th pick. When these envelopes were added to the tumbler, two envelopes were put in forcibly, and banged against the edge, while all the rest were set in gently. When drawing the envelope for the 1st pick, Stern went for the one with a bent corner, which upon opening the envelope, it was revealed that the New York Knicks logo was inside. This fueled speculation of a draft fix, with the theory being that the NBA wanted to send the best player in the draft to New York to increase ratings in a large television market. In the 1997 NBA playoffs, the NBA suspended five players following a brawl between the New York Knicks and Miami Heat, which affected the outcome of that series. Some of the suspensions were required by a league rule, implemented under Stern, that provides an automatic one-game suspension to any player who leaves his team's bench during a fight. In the 2007 Playoffs from the Suns-Spurs Game, several players who left the bench and were not involved in the altercation were also suspended, prompting complaints from officials on both teams