PHOENIX SUNS

NBA’s Adam Silver: Robert Sarver selling Suns is ‘right next step’

Sep 21, 2022, 2:55 PM | Updated: 4:38 pm

NBA commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement Wednesday that he fully supports Phoenix Suns and Mercury owner Robert Sarver’s decision to find a buyer for the franchises.

“This is the right next step for the organization and community,” Silver added.

National Basketball Players Association president C.J. McCollum, a guard for the New Orleans Pelicans, also released a statement Wednesday.

“We thank Mr. Sarver for making a swift decision that was in the best interest of our sports community,” McCollum said.

The Suns released their own statement as well, echoing Silver’s words.

The commissioner last week suspended Sarver a year and fined him the maximum allowed, $10 million, after a law firm corroborated accounts that Sarver used racist and misogynistic language while fostering a toxic workplace culture.

Silver cited the legal finding that Sarver acted without “animus” in the witness accounts of his behavior, adding that he could have more harshly punished the owner.

“I have access to information that the public doesn’t,” Silver said in his press conference, saying the context of Sarver’s actions and the owner’s positive contributions to the community carried weight in his decision about Sarver’s punishment.

“I’m able to look at the totality of the circumstances around the events in a way we’re not able to completely bring to life the nuance (of the released report),” Silver added. “I think that puts me in a different position as the person who has to render the ultimate judgment.”

But Silver’s comments a day after the NBA suspended Sarver were followed by stars LeBron James and Chris Paul, plus the National Basketball Players Association, asking for Sarver to receive a harsher punishment.

That public pressure carried into the end of the week, when PayPal, one of the Suns’ key sponsors, threatened to not renew with the franchise if Sarver remained in power beyond his suspension.

Sarver announced Wednesday he would seek a buyer.

“I expected that the commissioner’s one-year suspension would provide the time for me to focus, make amends and remove my personal controversy from the teams that I and so many fans love,” he said in a released statement.

“But in our current unforgiving climate, it has become painfully clear that that is no longer possible – that whatever good I have done, or could still do, is outweighed by things I have said in the past. For those reasons, I am beginning the process of seeking buyers for the Suns and Mercury.”

Phoenix Suns

Bol Bol looks on during a Phoenix Suns game...

Arizona Sports

Report: Bol Bol off South Sudan roster for Paris Olympics due to personal reasons

Phoenix Suns big man Bol Bol is reportedly off South Sudan's Olympic roster due to personal reasons, per ESPN's Leonard Solms.

5 hours ago

...

Arizona Sports Video

Video: Should the Phoenix Suns use the Golden State Warriors’ handling of the salary cap as an example?

Should the Phoenix Suns use the Golden State Warriors' handling of the salary cap as an example?

5 hours ago

Kevin Durant smiles during a Team USA exhibition...

Arizona Sports

Kevin Durant back practicing for Team USA in London

Phoenix Suns forward Kevin Durant is reportedly expected to return to Team USA practice in London after dealing with a strained calf.

9 hours ago

Valley Suns G League team logo...

Damon Allred

John Little to be named head coach of Suns’ G League affiliate, per report

The Suns will hire John Little to be the head coach of their G League affiliate, Valley Suns, HoopsHype's Michael Scotto reported Thursday.

20 hours ago

...

Arizona Sports Video

Video: Which Arizona sports legend was left off the top 100 athletes since 2000? #cardinals #nfl

ESPN released the final tier of its top 100 athletes since 2000 and Burns & Gambo can't help but notice one Arizona Cardinals legend was missing from the list entirely.

21 hours ago

...

Arizona Sports Video

Video: Arizona sports icons on (and snubbed from) top 100 athletes since 2000 ranking

ESPN released the final tier of its top 100 athletes since 2000 and while Olympian Michael Phelps took the No. 1 spot and Phoenix Mercury star Diana Taurasi finished among the top 25, Burns & Gambo can't help but notice one Arizona Cardinals legend was missing from the list entirely.

21 hours ago

NBA’s Adam Silver: Robert Sarver selling Suns is ‘right next step’