4. Blake Griffin: DeMarcus Cousins bristled in a recent game that the NBA babies Griffin. Well, sure, when he’s the most known name under 23 in the entire league, of course he’s going to get preferable treatment. Look, we all know superstars get calls on the court, and whether you’re already tired of Griffin’s antics, no one can deny he’s joined that group. It pays, in page views and otherwise, when he dunks on someone and it gets replayed all week. He’s the NBA’s newest tastemaker of what’s cool, and while it’s hard to measure the money of that, it’s influential.
3. Adam Silver: Endorsed as Commissioner David Stern’s replacement by Stern himself during All-Star weekend, Silver will be the next man in charge of the league. Stern also said then that he doesn’t want to be around to negotiate in 2017, when either side can opt out of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement. The NBA board will choose the successor, of course, but Stern has hand picked his guy. Will Silver, the deputy commissioner now, take the Roger Goodell model of the NFL and become a much more hands-on, tougher commish? Time will tell.