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If Ron Kirk Were NBA Commissioner ...

At this very moment, President Obama's chief of staff, William Daley, is looking for someone to replace Commerce Secretary Gary Locke, who Obama tapped on March 9 to become the next ambassador to China. An afternoon Wall Street Journal item reminds: "Ron Kirk, the U.S. trade representative, is widely considered a possible replacement for Mr. Locke." But on March 11, at a Christian Science Monitor forum, the former Dallas mayor would only say his real dream job was to replace David Stern as NBA commissioner.

That subject comes up again in an item posted today by Paul Bedard of U.S. News & World Report, who asked Kirk: Why so interested? To which he responded thusly:

Kirk's first thought was about James and his shocking decision last year to leave his Cleveland Cavaliers to jump to the rival Miami Heat. "My wife is from Cleveland. I cannot tell you the harm that it did," says Kirk. While he doesn't begrudge "King James's" move, he thinks that the star should have stayed and helped the Cavs get better. "I know my memories are richer because Magic Johnson and Larry Bird went to bed every night thinking, 'How can I beat this guy?'" he says. Of course, the former Dallas mayor has one exception -- for his beloved Dallas Mavericks. Kirk says if he was the NBA commissioner, "maybe then I could jury-rig the rules to get LeBron James and Dwyane Wade at the Dallas Mavericks, and just once in my lifetime, I could see the NBA trophy hoisted."

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