NEW YORK (CBSDFW.COM/CBS SPORTS) – NBA Commissioner Emeritus David Stern, 77, passed away on New Year’s Day as a result of the brain hemorrhage he suffered approximately three weeks ago.
His wife, Dianne, and their family were with him at his bedside, the NBA said.
Stern was commissioner from 1984 through 2014.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver issued the following statement:
“For 22 years, I had a courtside seat to watch David in action. He was a mentor and one of my dearest friends. We spent countless hours in the office, at arenas and on planes wherever the game would take us. Like every NBA legend, David had extraordinary talents, but with him it was always about the fundamentals – preparation, attention to detail, and hard work.
“David took over the NBA in 1984 with the league at a crossroads. But over the course of 30 years as Commissioner, he ushered in the modern global NBA. He launched groundbreaking media and marketing partnerships, digital assets and social responsibility programs that have brought the game to billions of people around the world. Because of David, the NBA is a truly global brand – making him not only one of the greatest sports commissioners of all time but also one of the most influential business leaders of his generation.
“Every member of the NBA family is the beneficiary of David’s vision, generosity and inspiration. Our deepest condolences go out to David’s wife, Dianne, their sons, Andrew and Eric, and their extended family, and we share our grief with everyone whose life was touched by him.”
Stern spent three decades as NBA commissioner and has remained affiliated with the league, holding the title of commissioner emeritus.
At the beginning of his tenure, the NBA Finals were still being aired on tape delay.
By the time he stepped down, the league had become a financial powerhouse and one of the most widely viewed sports in the world.
Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban tweeted some photos of himself with Stern and said, “RIP David. You always said you made me and you were absolutely right. You were a friend, mentor and administrator of the largest donut fund ever. You are missed.”
RIP David. You always said you made me and you were absolutely right . You were a friend, mentor and administrator of the largest donut fund ever. You are missed. pic.twitter.com/RYACDOj9ii
— Mark Cuban (@mcuban) January 1, 2020
The WNBA’s Dallas Wings released the following statement on Stern’s passing:
“We are saddened by the passing of former NBA Commissioner David Stern, whose bold transformative vision included the creation of the WNBA. We join many in the sports world, acknowledging Commissioner Stern’s large imprint on the WNBA and NBA. The future is bright in large part because of Commission Stern’s dynamic leadership. The Dallas Wings extend our condolences to the Stern family at this time.”