Mendoza: Silver does a gold medal act

Al Mendoza

I CAN only doff my hat to NBA (National Basketball Association) commissioner Adam Silver, whose decision for the NBA restart on July 30 is gold medal-worthy. Awesome.

Bold as it defies fears. Decisive as it throws doubts out the window. Committed as it defines the Commissioner’s office.

As planned, the Disney World campus in Orlando, Florida, will be the games’ venue. No crowds. Only players and selected team personnel allowed on the hardcourt. Games will be aired live on TV: 18 on TNT, 17 on ESPN, 14 on NBA TV and three on ABC. Cignal here?

The NBA is coming back because America is freedom rich—organically. It prides itself as the “land of the free” and the “home of the brave.”

Obviously, Silver fears not Covid-19, the deadliest pandemic in decades that has infected 10 million worldwide (two million in America alone), and has killed half a million-plus already.

Silver is willing to take risks, believing the league’s safety measures are airtight in blocking Covid-19.

With Silver’s U-Turn ploy amid the world’s worst health crisis since the bubonic plague, he could be putting his job on the line. If at all, his frail figure hides a rock-solid conviction that makes midget US President Donald Trump’s posturing.

But hasn’t Trump consistently shown some sense of bravery himself by not wearing a face mask in public?

The reason he has not ordered its mandatory use. Face masks in America are governed by resolutions on a per state basis, if not locale.

That is why many ultra-democratic Americans defy using it, almost insanely. As one female protester said: “I won’t wear a face mask as I don’t wear an underwear either. Things gotta breathe.”

Will the NBA players be in face masks when they arrive on July 7 at the Disney Complex, where they will be tested daily once they get there? If yes, will they also be in masks when playing?

But this is the catch: Since they’ll be “quarantined” at Disney, they could be away from their families for, maybe, three months, with family visits to begin only in late August or early September.

Wealthy superstars need to sacrifice, too.