Bill Russell and Adam Silver: ‘A special relationship’

Long before he ran the NBA, Adam Silver was a devoted young staff member, opening mail, writing notes, and carrying tons of glossy Bill Russell photos.

Russell, of course, was notoriously reluctant to sign autographs, preferring conversation and handshakes to scribbled signatures as a means of connecting with people. There was one picture. And Silver had the job of navigating those moments in his role as a special assistant to the Commissioner in the early 1990s.

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