Adam Silver says little chance in banning Hack-a-Shaq

OAKLAND, Calif. -- NBA commissioner Adam Silver said Thursday that there is little likelihood the league will move to reform some of the widely discussed issues such as intentional fouling and conference imbalance that have materialized this postseason.

Calls to ban the Hack-a-Shaq tactic, in which a team deliberately sends an opponent's poor foul shooter to the free throw line, have grown increasingly louder in recent weeks, but Silver said executives at the league's general managers meeting May 13 voiced opposition to modifying the rule.

"The data shows that we're largely talking about two teams, throughout the playoffs," Silver said. "In fact, 90 percent of the occurrences of Hack-a-Shaq involve the Rockets and the Clippers, and for the most part, it's two players. Seventy-five percent involve two players, DeAndre Jordan and Dwight Howard. So then the question becomes, should we be making that rule change largely for two teams and two players?"

Silver said that while he harbors reservations about the aesthetic effect of Hack-a-Shaq, ratings suggest it has little effect on viewership. He added that "as a steward of the game," he had concerns that eliminating Hack-a-Shaq might provide a disincentive for young basketball players to practice foul shooting.

On the suggestion of seeding NBA playoff teams 1 through 16 rather than ordering the top eight in each conference, Silver said concerns over player health and the longer distances teams would travel during early-round matchups were a deterrence.

"I think ultimately where we came out is this notion of 1-through-16 seeding, while it seems attractive in many ways, because of the additional travel that will result, it just doesn't seem like a good idea at the moment," Silver said.

He cited the Golden State Warriors, who would have faced the Boston Celtics in the first round of this year's playoffs under such a scenario.

"This notion of, for example, this team would have played Boston in the first round under a 1-through-16 seeding and would have had to crisscross back and forth across the country, which does not seem like a good idea," Silver said.

The commissioner said the NBA will make adjustments to the schedule in 2015-16 to limit back-to-back games as another effort to reduce the grind of the season and reduce the number of injuries to players.

"I think the science over time zone travel has gotten much better, where moving four time zones we think may have an effect on players' bodies that we may not have understood historically," Silver said. "So this is all something we're taking a very close look at. We're working in conjunction with the players' association on this."

The Warriors also came up in regard to how the NBA handles concussions. Golden State's Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson both sustained head injuries in the Western Conference finals, with Thompson later being diagnosed with a concussion.

"Our protocols were followed exactly as mandated in the case of both players," Silver said. "I've had discussions with the players' union as to whether there are other ways to do it, and my response has been we're all ears. Right now we talked to the other leagues. We've talked to medical advisers everywhere about the best way to approach this.

"As I said, we think the best way we're approaching it now is best in class in terms of medical and science information that's available to us."

Regarding world basketball, Silver said there has been "absolutely no suggestion" of any wrongdoing with basketball's international governing body like the scandal that has rocked soccer, expressing his confidence in FIBA and noting that the NBA has a seat on its board.

"Their financials are audited. They have open board meetings," Silver said. "And again, there's never been a discussion in our sport of any of the sort of taint that we're seeing right now in FIFA."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.