NBA season's scoring surge doesn't worry Adam Silver

NBA season’s scoring surge doesn’t worry Adam Silver

/ 07:16 PM February 18, 2024

NBA Scores, News, Schedules

NBA commissioner Adam Silver

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver speaks to the media at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 17, 2024 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Stacy Revere/Getty Images/AFP

NBA commissioner Adam Silver said Saturday he is not worried about a league scoring surge this season, crediting a growing global talent pool for the superior point production.

Speaking Saturday to reporters on the eve of the NBA All-Star Game, Silver said scoring was only about one point per game higher than last season.

There have been 15 50-point games by NBA players so far this season and six performances of 60 or more with two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Joel Embiid scoring 70 and Dallas guard Luka Doncic striking for 73.

There were 25 50-point NBA games last season, the most since the 1962-63 campaign.


“There’s a lot happening here,” Silver said. “The skill level is off the charts. What we’re seeing is now in this league every player in every position has to be able to shoot the basketball.

“You’re seeing this global pool of talent coming into the league, some of the best athletes in the world, and frankly just shoot the lights out and I think that’s what is responsible for the increased scoring.”

Silver said the NBA has not staked out a position that higher scoring is better for the league.

“I want to dispell any notion the league feels that high-scoring games in the abstract are good,” Silver said. “What we want are competitive games.


“I disagree with the people who feel teams aren’t playing defense. The defensive intensity is there. Players are being asked to cover much larger areas of the court than they were asked to historically.

“I actually am pleased with the state of the game.”


Silver addressed the concerns of some coaches who feel NBA rule changes have favored scoring punch by limiting what players can do defensively.

“In part, that has been very intentional,” Silver said. “There was a period of time in this league when people thought the game had become too physical and we had taken away some of the aesthetic beauty from the game.”

Silver said he will continue to listen to coaches and players and the league competition committee.

“Fans like to see players have that (scoring) ability to use these extraordinary talents,” Silver said. “They like defensive intensity and they want players to be able to play physical defense, but not in a way that it hampers offensive players from using their incredible skills.

“I’m pleased with where the game is but it’s something we’ll continue to look at.”

On other topics, Silver said it is too soon to judge the new player participation policy, trying to keep top stars from sitting out big games, in part by forcing 65 games played minimum for NBA awards.

“I’m not ready to say it isn’t working so far,” Silver said. “The number of games that players have participated in is up this season and interestingly enough injuries are actually down.

“I think the right time to take a further look at this rule is the end of the season.”

Return to Paris

Silver said the NBA would play a regular-season game in Paris next season as it did this season, but had no other details — notably whether or not one of the teams in France would be the San Antonio Spurs and star French rookie Victor Wembanyama.

“We will be back playing a regular-season game again in Paris. There are some discussions ongoing about which arena we will play in,” Silver said.

“Stay tuned in terms of the Spurs playing in Paris. I can tell you… it’s certainly something he very much would like to see, his team the San Antonio Spurs playing in Paris.”

Silver said the NBA went back to an East vs West All-Star Game format this season because the game flopped last year with captains drafting lineups from a pool of all-star talent.

“We thought what we were doing was not working,” Silver said. “People were uniformly critical of last year’s All-Star Game and felt it was not a competitive game.

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“We’ve returned back to basketball.”

TAGS: Adam Silver, NBA

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