By banning L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling for life, Adam Silver has made the jobs a little easier for his colleagues in the Commissioners’ Club.
Every owner of every major-league franchise, in the NBA or elsewhere, now knows that views like those espoused by Sterling will result in swift and decisive action.
How could Commissioner Roger Goodell do anything less with an NFL owner, now that Silver has set the precedent in a different sport? With Goodell developing in his seven-plus years on the job a reputation for aggressively enforcing all rules and policies against the league’s players, it would be virtually impossible for Goodell to not drop the hammer on an NFL owner who engages in similar conduct.
This doesn’t change the fact that the league should be more careful about screening future owners. Silver’s action nevertheless puts all current and future NFL owners on clear and unambiguous notice. If you harbor hatred and bigotry in your heart and if it somehow finds a way to make itself to the public eye, game over.