James Dolan covered expenses for David Stern Memorial Service
The New York Knicks showed the ultimate reverence to late commissioner David Stern, canceling their Tuesday practice to attend his memorial service at Radio City. Knicks owner James Dolan covered the expenses of his service, given that his company owns Radio City Music Hall, where the memorial took place, according to SNY’s Ian Begley.
The Los Angeles Lakers canceled practice on Monday but no players were in attendance. The team was represented by general manager Rob Pelinka, assistant coach Jason Kidd and governing owner Jeanie Buss. Brooklyn Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson and general manager Sean Marks attended, though no Nets players went.
Many NBA faces, including Lakers legend Magic Johnson gave excellent speeches about Stern. Johnson specifically recalled Stern’s generosity, allowing him to participate in the 1992 All-Star Game in Orlando, despite having retired from the game in 1991.
That event paved the way for his participation in the 1992 Dream Team that would go on to make history and secure the gold medal at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, to this day the most revered iteration of USA Basketball. Johnson referred to Stern as the “angel” who changed his basketball life.
Stern’s son Eric gave some touching anecdotes, witnessed by former players like Bill Russell, Michael Jordan, Oscar Robertson, Hakeem Olajuwon, and Yao Ming, among others.
Former NBA executive and Golden State Warriors president Rick Welts spoke glowingly about Stern, as the two memorably innovated the All-Star Game.
Dolan helped not only with the arrangements but facilitated a touching ceremony for one of the most integral faces of the game.