NBA: Phoenix Suns Owner Fined $10M for Misconduct

NBA: Phoenix Suns Owner Fined $10M for Misconduct
Photo: usatoday

The Facts

  • On Tuesday, the NBA announced that the owner of the Phoenix Suns, Robert Sarver, faces a one year suspension and a $10M fine – the maximum amount permitted by the NBA – following a misconduct probe.

  • During his ban, Sarver – who also owns the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury – will be restricted from representing, or being involved in, any of his franchises. He will also be prohibited from attending the franchises' facilities or events. The NBA will require both teams to engage in several workplace improvements.

The Spin

Narrative A

Although this decision reinforces the NBA's commitment to holding franchise owners accountable for their wrongdoings, the League must not be praised for imposing merely a one-year ban and a fine on Sarver. His actions, like Los Angeles Clippers' former owner Donald Sterling, warranted a lifetime ban - the only difference between their actions is that Sterling's racist remarks were recorded.

Narrative B

There's no doubt that Sarver is a repulsive person who, ideally, shouldn't be allowed to own an NBA team. However, the League couldn't do anything more to punish his behavior. Unlike in the Sterling case, banning Sarver for life and forcing him to sell his franchises would drag the NBA into a legal battle they have a questionable chance of winning.

Articles on this story

Sign up to our daily newsletter