The NBA Must Take Action And Cut Ties With Robert Sarver

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The NBA Must Take Action And Cut Ties With Robert Sarver

Basketball

The NBA Must Take Action And Cut Ties With Robert Sarver

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Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Within any workplace setting, having a respectful and open atmosphere is something of utmost importance. It defines how a business operates and whether or not the workers have high morale. However, when it comes to professional sports, that line seems to become blurred quite often. Unprofessional behavior seems to be overlooked whether that is from players, leadership staff, etc. It’s a sad reality but at the end of the day, money talks louder than morals a lot of the time.

For the Phoenix Suns, the person that is causing such issues stems right from the top of the entire tree. Owner Robert Sarver has been suspended for one year and fined $10 million after an investigation by the NBA found him guilty after allegations of racism and misogyny during Sarver’s 17 years as owner.

It was reported that Sarver used the N-word multiple times during his tenure, had multiple incidents of inappropriate conduct and comments towards female employees, and cultivated a workplace setting with demeaning and harsh treatment of employees. During his tenure, there has been rumors of inappropriate actions taking place but until late 2021, nothing had been set in stone. A report sent out by ESPN detailed all the findings and the NBA took notice and started their investigation.

Let me be very clear, there is no place in professional sports or the world for this type of behavior. Under the leadership of Sarver, the Suns became a hotbed for racism, sexism, sexual harassment, and poor treatment of employees. It started from the top up and moved down the line of the franchise. According to the ESPN report, the investigation included interviews with 320 current and former employees, Sarver himself, and examined more than 80,000 documents.

Now the punishments towards Sarver are just a slap on the wrist and in any other workplace, a person found of these actions would be fired. However, you can’t just fire the owner of the team. But what can happen is that the NBA can force Sarver out, much like they did with Donald Sterling and the Los Angeles Clippers years ago. Sarver also owns the WNBA team in the Phoenix Mercury and is suspended from all ties to the organization as well. Commissioner Adam Silver has already shown a willingness to ban an owner before and he needs to do it again.

The NBA needs to send another statement, showing that this kind of behavior will not be tolerated. Ban Sarver for life. He deserves it for the actions that have taken place during his tenure. In a league such as the NBA that is predominantly Black, these comments made by Sarver, can’t be taken lightly. In a league such as the WNBA, the sexism showed by him, can’t be taken lightly. The entirety of events that have taken place since Sarver took over the Suns can’t be taken lightly. Sarver must go and the NBA needs to take action now.

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