Teaching Students About David Stern
David Stern, a legendary figure in the world of sports, is an essential topic for students to learn about when exploring the landscape of sports management and administration. As the former commissioner of the National Basketball Association (NBA), Stern’s tenure had a profound impact on the league and the global expansion of basketball. This article discusses effective approaches to teaching students about David Stern and his immense contributions to the NBA.
Early Life and Career
Begin by offering students insight into David Stern’s background, including his upbringing, education, and early career. Contextualizing Stern’s origins will help students understand how his life experiences shaped his leadership style.
1. Encourage research on his childhood in New York City.
2. Guide students on studying his academic journey from Columbia Law School to working as a litigation attorney.
3. Teach students about Stern’s initial involvement with the NBA as outside counsel.
Entering NBA Leadership
A key component of understanding David Stern’s influence on professional basketball is learning about his transition into NBA leadership. Educators should:
1. Detail how he became the league’s general counsel in 1978.
2. Describe milestones during his time as executive vice president, leading to his appointment as commissioner in 1984.
Innovations Under David Stern’s Tenure
Once students grasp Stern’s journey to becoming commissioner, it is essential to highlight key innovations and initiatives under his leadership that changed NBA history and influenced present-day policies:
1. Implement a salary cap system
2. Institute a draft lottery
3. Establish marketing deals with media outlets for increased exposure
4. Initiate global expansion by opening offices in multiple countries
5. Found the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA)
Stern’s Impact on Professional Basketball and Global Sports Marketing
To help students appreciate Stern’s influence beyond the NBA, teachers should:
1. Show how he transformed the league from a domestic entity into a global brand.
2. Encourage students to discuss the role of merchandising and global television broadcasts in expanding the NBA’s influence worldwide.
3. Explore how the Dream Team in the 1992 Olympics revolutionized international basketball.
4. Discuss other sports leagues that have adopted Stern’s blueprint for global expansion, including the NFL and MLB.
Reflection and Legacy
Finally, educators should encourage students to reflect on David Stern’s legacy and what current and future sports management professionals can learn from his tenure:
1. Analyze his contributions to the growth of the NBA, both financially and in terms of popularity
2. Discuss his legacy in establishing principles for successful sports marketing
3. Consider how modern-day commissioners may implement or adapt Stern’s innovative approaches to address current challenges.
Teaching students about David Stern’s impact on the NBA and modern sports management requires a comprehensive approach. Educators should help students understand his background, career trajectory, innovations during his tenure, global reach, and enduring legacy. By exploring these topics thoroughly, students will gain valuable insights into Stern’s leadership style and approaches that shaped professional sports for decades to come.