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NBA'S STERN KICKS OFF SEASON WITH PRESS CONFERENCE
Published November 3, 1994
NBA Commissioner David Stern hosted the first of this year's weekly NBA telephone press conferences yesterday. LEAGUE MARKETING: Stern was asked about the success the league has had marketing its individual stars: "There was an enormous amount [of money] put behind our athletes by beverage companies and athletic shoe companies. ... And number two, we sort of moved in at a time when video and music opportunities were extraordinary and our players, [put] to music, are really quite something." LABOR UPDATE: On the decision to play the season without a CBA: "What we decided was that for whatever reason, there had not been a full opportunity to explore what we think is the possibility of a long term agreement. ... It was a better idea for us if we could make the right kind of deal with the players to extend the agreement for one more year, rather than draw the line at this time." D.C. ARENA: On BET President Robert Johnson's plan to privately fund the a downtown arena in Washington, DC, Stern was asked if the NBA would approve an expansion team for DC if Bullets owner Abe Pollin decides not to move from suburban Maryland. Stern called that scanrio a "long shot, at best." He noted that a DC expansion franchise would have competition from many cities -- in particular, St. Louis, Anaheim, Mexico City, Memphis (THE DAILY).