Former NBA Commissioner David Stern, who guided the league through a remarkable period of growth in popularity, suffered a sudden brain hemorrhage Thursday in New York City and underwent emergency surgery.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with David and his family,” the league said in a statement Thursday night. There was no immediate word on Stern’s exact medical condition following the surgery.
David Stern addresses the media after an NBA Board of Governors meeting in New York City, Oct. 23, 2013. (Getty Images)
Stern was hospitalized after collapsing at Manhattan restaurant Brasserie 8.5, according to ESPN basketball writer Adrian Wojnarowski.
The 77-year-old Stern served for three decades as the NBA’s longest-tenured commissioner unti he stepped aside in 2014, succeeded by current commissioner Adam Silver.
Stern’s tenure included league expansion, the creation of the WNBA and the emergence of NBA players as global cultural icons.
Stern has remained affiliated with the league with the title of commissioner emeritus and has also purused other interests, such as sports technology.