The NBA is reducing the base salaries for around 100 of its top-earning league office executives by 20%, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
The salary reductions include commissioner Adam Silver and deputy commissioner Mark Tatum, per ESPN. There will not be widespread cuts to the rest of the NBA organization.
“These are unprecedented times and, like other companies across all industries, we need to take short-term steps to deal with the harsh economic impact on our business and organization,” NBA spokesman Mike Bass said in a statement to ESPN.
The move comes at a time with a heightened sense of uncertainty throughout various sports leagues as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
“After listening to our staff and players, it’s clear that was the wrong decision. We have reversed it and will be paying these employees their full salary,” Josh Harris, founder of Harris Blitzer Sports and Entertainment, said in a statement.
“This is an extraordinary time in our world–unlike any most of us have ever lived through before–and ordinary business decisions are not enough to meet the moment. To our staff and fans, I apologize for getting this wrong.”
Silver will not be the first commissioner of an American league to take a salary reduction. PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan has also reportedly decided to forgo his salary indefinitely during the break caused by the coronavirus. Monahan’s senior management team has additionally agreed to a 25% salary cut until further notice.
The NHL also said it will temporarily cut the pay of league office employees by as much as 25 percent, starting April 1.
As of Thursday afternoon, there are nearly 490,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus worldwide, causing nearly 22,000 deaths. In the United States, there are more than 75,000 confirmed cases.