NBA basketball commissioner David
Stern meets with the media before the start of Game 4 of the Washington
Wizards Eastern Conference playoff game against the Cleveland Cavaliers in
Washington April 30, 2007. [Reuters]
US National Basketball Association commissioner David Stern sees more of a
need for new pro basketball teams in China than in North America.
"I think 30 teams is a nice, round number, and I would not be recommending to
the NBA owners to expand," Stern said before Game 4 of the first-round playoff
series between the Washington Wizards and Cleveland Cavaliers.
"We will see in the next couple of years, coming out of the Beijing Olympics,
the possibility of some joint venture between the NBA and someone in China about
an NBA-sponsored and -branded league in China."
Stern added that "an NBA of China" is closer to happening than what he called
a 20-year plan for having five franchises in Europe, and that, "domestically, we
have enough teams."
On the topic of a new building for the Orlando Magic, the commissioner said
there was a recent "midnight handshake" and that "they're working to finalize
the deal, but with a very robust contribution from the team, there are now plans
for a new arena."
Stern has said that Orlando would be a candidate to host All-Star weekend
with a new building.