“Now, some people might suggest that the words Black Lives Matter are causing massive amounts of people to tune out the NBA. There’s absolutely no data to support that.”

Conversely, Silver suggested the league had registered an increase in following due to its social justice stand.

“There’s no doubt there are some people—and whether or not they were truly our fans to begin with is unclear—who have become further engaged with the league because they believe in our players and they believe in the positions they’ve taken, even if they don’t agree with everything they say,” he added.

“They respect their right to speak out on issues that are important to them.”