|Stern still trying to avoid detailed answers in Thomas case|
|Written by Admin|
|Wednesday, 10 October 2007 18:04|
The NBA commissioner, speaking in London before Wednesday night's preseason game between Boston and Minnesota, tried to avoid the issue by talking about previous comments he made on the subject.
``What I said then was that it was still under consideration,'' Stern said. ``That there were many issues having to do with understanding the transcript, understanding what exactly the jury did and what role a possible appeal should play in considering this. And I further said I wanted to discuss it with the board of governors.''
Thomas, a Hall of Fame player who is now the coach of the New York Knicks, was found guilty early this month of sexually harassing former team executive Anucha Browne Sanders. A jury ordered the owners of the Knicks to pay $11.6 million to Browne Sanders after finding she endured two years of insults and unwanted advances from Thomas.
Stern also talked about Tim Donaghy, the NBA referee who pleaded guilty to betting on games, including some he worked, and providing inside information to others to help them win bets.
``We're analyzing interviews with six officials and I'll have something more to say before the regular season begins,'' Stern said. ``We remain, based upon all of the information we have, of the strong view that Donaghy was an isolated incidence of criminal activity.''
Stern also admitted that the NBA needs to be more honest with its fans.
``We've got to be quicker in admitting when mistakes have been made by officials ... rather than waiting for the public to come to us,'' Stern said. ``For the most part, people appreciate the fact that we were out front with it.''
The game at the sold-out O2 Arena, one of several on the NBA's preseason tour of Europe, saw Celtics forward Kevin Garnett facing his old team for the first time. Boston won 92-81.
And before the game even started, the inevitable question of European expansion came up yet again.
``It would be fair to say that the thought has crossed our mind,'' Stern said. ``It would require a lot in terms of our season, change our formatting. But certainly it's something that gets knocked around.''
Late last month, the NHL opened its regular season with a two-game series at the O2 Arena.
``What the O2 does is provide the opportunity ... for an NBA-style or NHL-style experience, which European fans have not seen,'' Stern said. ``This is a great start.''