Adam Silver Speaks on Potentially Moving 2017 NBA All-Star Game from CharlotteApril 21, 2016
The 2017 NBA All-Star Game remains scheduled to take place in Charlotte, North Carolina, but NBA Commissioner Adam Silver admitted Thursday that it is far from set in stone.
According to Tim Bontemps of the Washington Post, Silver said that unless the controversial laws that were recently passed in North Carolina are changed, the NBA will be forced to take the All-Star Game elsewhere.
Per Tal Kopan and Eugene Scott of CNN.com, the laws prevent transgender people from using bathrooms corresponding with their gender identity and also restricts the passing of nondiscrimination laws within cities.
Silver previously called the laws “problematic” with regard to the NBA allowing Charlotte to host the All-Star Game, according to ESPN.com’s Ohm Youngmisuk:
By no means are we saying we are stepping back. The message is not that the current state of the affairs is OK for the league. Let me be clear: The current state of the law is problematic for the NBA in North Carolina. The discussion [with team owners] was how can we be most constructive in being a part of the process that results in the kind of change that we think is necessary. That is where we find ourselves.
Many involved with the NBA have called for the league to take a stand against North Carolina’s laws, including analyst and Basketball Hall of Famer Charles Barkley, per CNN (h/t Andrew Joseph of USA Today’s FTW):
I think the NBA should move the All-Star Game from there next year. As a black person, I’m against any form of discrimination—against whites, Hispanics, gays, lesbians, however you want to phrase it. It’s my job, with the position of power that I’m in and being able to be on television, I’m supposed to stand up for the people who can’t stand up for themselves. So, I think the NBA should move the All-Star Game from Charlotte.
The 2017 NBA All-Star Game is scheduled to take place at the Charlotte Hornets’ Time Warner Cable Arena on Feb. 19. 2017, which means the league and the state of North Carolina still have time to come to a resolution.
At the same time, the NBA owes a courtesy to its fans in terms of giving them ample notice to prepare plans to attend the game.
Silver’s latest comments made the NBA’s stance abundantly clear, which means the ball is now in North Carolina’s court in terms of deciding what lengths it is willing to go to in order to keep the All-Star Game within its borders.