NBA gets an “A” for Diversity and Applause for Increased Ratings: Lockout still Looms

The National Basketball Association (NBA) has cause to celebrate: the playoffs generated the highest ratings for TNT basketball ever, and 2011 championship series between the Miami Heat and the Dallas Mavericks saw sports fans actually compelled to

Sports offers the only opportunity for positive images of Black people to be created

care about and invest in the product again:

Sunday’s Game 6 pulled in almost 23 million viewers, 31% more than last year’s marquee Game 6 matchup between the Los Angeles and Boston Celtics, according to Nielsen Co. data. (The 2010 final went seven games.)

It’s clear most were tuning in to watch the Heat: In the two months of the playoffs, the Heat were mentioned about 330,000 times on such consumer media sites as Facebook and Twitter, as well as on blogs and message boards, said Nielsen. That compares with 140,000 mentions of the Dallas Mavericks.

More importantly, Richard Lapchick just bestowed the NBA with an “A” ranking for its commitment to diversity:

The NBA isn’t resting on its laurels as a pacesetter in sports diversity.

The league has again earned an A grade in a study of the diversity of its leadership in its front office and its 30 teams.

The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport at the University of Central Florida released its annual report on the league Thursday. The NBA received an A-plus for race and an A-minus for gender. It is the only men’s pro league to be awarded an overall A.

Using data from the 2010-11 season, the study found that for professional positions at the league office, 36 percent were held by people of color and 42 percent by women.

At the beginning of the season, 33 percent of head coaches and 45 percent of assistants were people of color. The percentage for general managers or executives with equivalent responsibilities was 26 percent.

There were five African-American CEOs/presidents for teams and two women who were presidents.

“Our goal has always been to hire the best people available, which has worked well for us, and we will continue to do that,” NBA spokesman Mike Bass said.

“They’ve consistently had a record of opening up the search process so it includes a diverse group of candidates, and I think that’s helped more than anything else,” said Lapchick, chair of the DeVos Sport Business Management Program at UCF and director of The Institute for Diversity of Ethics in Sport.

The study found that 83 percent of the league’s players were people of color this season, with the percentage of African-American players increasing one point to 78 percent. The percentage of Asians remained 1 percent, the percentage of Latinos rose slightly to 4 percent and percentage classified as “other” was under 1 percent.

Lapchick only believes professional sports that have a complete commitment (a religious fervor and zeal) to replacing all white people in front office, managerial and coaching positions are worthy of an “A” rating.

He has attacked NASCAR for having a ‘racist’ culture; called the college football practice of hiring predominately white coaches a grave injustice and attempts to hire more Black coach “too slow” that can only be remedied with the implementation of a ‘Rooney Rule’;  and bemoaned the dropping participation of Black people in Major League Baseball (MLB).

But a sport with only 17 percent white participation is classified as an “A” for diversity in his book.

As of 2008, the NBA was a league with only a couple score white American players:

Is it just a coincidence that the Indiana Pacers have 5 White American players on their team?

As of January 27th, 2008, there are 51 white American-born players in the NBA. This represents just 11.8% of the 432 total players on current NBA rosters.

Here I’ve selected 12 of the best to see how an All-White USA team would stack up.

With the game of basketball being more global than ever before, and with more and more international players becoming stars in the states, is the white American baller a dying breed in the NBA? Do certain NBA cities prefer white players more than others?

Lapchick’s view of a perfect world for professional and ultimately collegiate sports is one where every player is a Person of Color (PoC) and every head coaching, assistant coach, and front office (athletic department) position is held by a non-white.

Sadly, the popularity of the NBA compared to the NCAA March Madness Tournament (and revenue generated during that 68-team battle royal) shows that sports fans do enjoy seeing white players compete. As of 2006, 30 percent of players on  Division I NCAA teams were white.

People can say they hate the Duke Blue Devils and other teams that play white players, but as Richard Spencer put it, perhaps its because the Duke players overwhelmingly look like the student body they represent.

The NBA is largely being rejected by casual white fans turned off by the thuggery of the Black athletes, a problem that football needs to be worried of repeating.

And who can forget that NBA had to take out an emergency $200+ million loan to help teams make payroll a few years ago?

The NBA is headed for a lockout. Were it not for ESPN basically buying the league and writing them blank checks to survive, the NBA would be in a situation where attrition of at least 8 markets would be necessary to financially survive.

Players salary are too great and not enough revenue is being generated to substantiate paying exorbitant salaries to players who more likely than not end up bankrupt upon retirement anyways:

Repeating the words several times, David Stern made it clear: NBA owners and players are “very far apart” on a new labor deal.

And with the union saying the league hasn’t moved off its harshest demands, it may be hard to get closer in time to prevent a lockout.

“I think one of the owners indicated at the conclusion of today’s meeting that he was very pessimistic as to whether or not they’d be able to reach an accord between now and the end of the month, and I’m forced to share that sentiment,” union executive director Billy Hunter said Wednesday. “I think maybe it’s going to be a difficult struggle.”

Representatives of the owners and players completed a second day of meetings, scheduled two more for next week, and expressed hope that continued dialogue before the June 30 expiration of the collective bargaining agreement could head off a work stoppage.

Yet the players reiterated their opposition to a hard salary cap, reduction in contract lengths and the amount for which they could be guaranteed, and said owners haven’t budged on their desire for all three.

“No change at all. What has changed is maybe the mechanism, the system somewhat in maybe how we get there. We tossed around some ideas in that regard, but there is no hiding the fact that the main components of what we originally received in their proposal have not changed at all,” union president Derek Fisher of the Lakers said. “So from that standpoint, there hasn’t been much of a negotiation because that really hasn’t changed.”

Owners are seeking an overhaul of the system after losses of hundreds of millions of dollars annually during the current CBA, which was ratified in 2005. They believe they could get the relief they seek through a hard cap that would replace the current soft cap system that allows teams to exceed the limit under certain exceptions.

During a lockout, one wonders if NBA players will resort to payday loans – like National Football League do now – to make ends meet?

One day, Americans will reject Black-Run America (BRA) and it will start with the rejection of professional sports. When they realize that the goals of Richard Lapchick are also the goals of Disingenuous White Liberals (DWLs) for every profession in America, perhaps people will finally say enough.

All that takes is turning off the television and not watching sports, the only avenue for positive images of Black people to be manufactured left in America.



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