David Stern will step down from his post as commissioner of the NBA on Feb. 1, 2014, the NBA has confirmed.
Stern has served as league commissioner since Feb. 1, 1984, and his retirement date will mark 30 years to the day that he replaced the late former commissioner Larry O’Brien.
Stern sent an email Thursday to several NBA executives informing them of his decision. Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver was unanimously picked by the Board of Governors to be Stern’s successor.
Stern has been credited with growing the NBA into the overwhelmingly popular and global entity that it is today. Last December, after the league’s latest lockout was resolved, he hinted at retirement by saying it would be the last labor negotiation he would oversee.
Stern began working for the NBA as outside counsel in 1966, and to many basketball fans, he is the only commissioner hey have known. Throughout the world of professional sports, Stern has widely been regarded as the best commissioner in the business.