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Drug policy, implemented in 1983

NBA fans have long given credit to David Stern for establishing pro sports’ first comprehensive drug punishment plan, but in reality former commissioner Lawrence O’Brien was in office when the policies were negotiated and agreed upon in 1983. Stern was the driving lead counsel during collective bargaining agreement talks, though, working with lead player representative Bob Lanier in hashing out a policy that would be emulated by other sports leagues soon after. Punishing those with addiction issues is sometimes cruel, but the quality of play skyrocketed. – Kelly Dwyer

Six of David Stern's lasting impacts

Across 30 years as NBA commissioner, David Stern presided over the league's colossal global growth. He impacted the NBA in a variety of way that will be long remembered. Here are six of them.