It can feel like every fifth word out of new NBA Commissioner Adam Silver’s mouth is “transparency.”
However, he is not just talk. He is walking the walk.
Mark Cuban has been pushing for the league to provide more transparency to teams on officials since he bought the Mavericks in 2000 and now he’s getting it — bi-weekly reports on blown calls. That’s what Cuban told Howard Beck of Bleacher Report.
“I think he’s taken some great steps on the officiating,” Cuban said. “There’s been more changes in 15 days, or whatever it is, than I saw in 14 years.”
Cuban then divulged the most significant of those changes: The league is now sending its teams regular reports on blown calls by the referees. It’s one of the first steps in Silver’s push for greater transparency….
“So I like what he’s doing there,” Cuban said.
Beck notes these reports are not new — the NBA tracks and grades its referees (and yes, even fines them at times) — but they had been in the hands of a few at the league office before and that was it. Now teams are getting those reports in their inbox. How, or even if, that changes officiating around the league remains to be seen.
The big difference between Silver and David Stern is not broad picture concepts but rather style — Silver is more of a consensus builder, a believer in the free flow of information and ideas. Stern was much more the dictator, and like all dictators he wanted to control the flow of information.
That doesn’t mean sweeping changes in the product or even how things are done, but it does mean more discussion about changes. That’s a good thing.