David Stern is retiring as commissioner of the NBA after 30 years on the job.

"He really looked for people who had the same genuine love for the sport that he had," said Rick Welts, who worked for the NBA for 17 years as an executive, ultimately becoming Chief Marketing Officer and president of NBA Properties before taking jobs as president of the Phoenix Suns and, then, the Golden State Warriors.

"It makes a difference. He wasn't interested in people who were really talented people unless they had that emotional investment in the game. Because he does."

The comments by Welts are from an extended oral history of Stern's tenure by David Aldridge.