Adam Silver Discusses NBA Expansion in Seattle, Las Vegas Following Mayor's Comments

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVApril 15, 2022

NEW YORK - APRIL 6: NBA Commissioner Adam Silver speaks to the media after the Board of Governors meetings on April 6, 2022 at the St. Regis Hotel in New York City. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2022 NBAE (Photo by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images)
David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images

NBA commissioner Adam Silver discussed the possibility of expansion during Friday's interview on the Dan Patrick Show (topic begins at 14:15):

"There's no doubt Seattle would be a great market, Las Vegas would be a great market," Silver said. "There's state-of-the-art arenas in both those communities."

The discussion comes after Seattle mayor Bruce Harrell indicated the possibility of Seattle getting a new NBA team. 

"So without revealing my 'confidential sources,' I'm very optimistic," Harrell said Thursday. "But I will tell you almost on a weekly basis I'm getting updates on what's happening in the league, where there's some opportunities."

Seattle was home of the SuperSonics from 1967 to 2008, when they moved to become the Oklahoma City Thunder. 

Despite the constant campaigning to get a team back to Seattle, Silver cautioned that NBA expansion is "not on the front burner."

The commissioner noted a concern about keeping the league competitive.

"Even with all the very best players in the world coming to this league...you still don't have the kind of competitive parity that we would like," Silver said. "If you expand, you're diluting talent even more."

The other issue is with the revenue-sharing among the league's governors, which would go from a 30-way split to a 32-way split.

It could be an issue at the upcoming negotiations for the collective bargaining agreement, which expires after the 2023-24 season. 

There is at least some momentum for expansion, with Bill Simmons saying on his podcast in February that he believes the NBA will expand to Seattle and Las Vegas. It's clear these two cities are at least on a shortlist in the commissioner's mind for when new teams are created down the line.