Following Donald Sterling and “Tape-Gate”, Miami Heat superstar has a message for the rest of the NBA, owners and front office personnel includes:
“If you own a team or play for a team, you are a face in a huge [league],” James said. “No one face is bigger than this brand – NBA, NFL, MLB, whatever the case may be. …If you want to say it in your own confinement, go ahead. It can’t get to the public.”
“It’s very important. We don’t want this to linger on in our sport,” James said. “It sucks that it happened. The players, the owners and everyone associated with this game, there is no need for it. The quicker it gets done, the quicker we move on.”
via LeBron James has message for NBA owners, players | Yahoo! Sports
Since the emergence of Donald Sterling’s racist tape, James hasn’t shied away from being overly critical of the Clippers owner. We all remember his comment heard round the world
“There’s no room for Donald Sterling in the NBA — there is no room for him,” said James following the tapes release. “Obviously, if the reports are true, it’s unacceptable in our league. It doesn’t matter, white, black or Hispanic — all across the races it’s unacceptable. As the commissioner of our league they have to make a stand. They have to be very aggressive with it. I don’t know what it will be, but we can’t have that in our league.”
These comments reflect that mentality, but on a broader level, warning his co-workers and business partners that the image of the league is at stake when they choose to speak their opinions in a public forum. While freedom of speech is a right provided by the Bill of Rights, when representing a private company, there’s little leeway in regards to saying what you want, when you want, and how you feel about a particular situation.
With Donald Sterling on the road to being removed from the NBA in its entirety, it’s a guarantee that we won’t have any NBA employees making verbal mistakes anytime soon unless they choose to face the same fate.