The International Amateur Basketball Federation (FIBA) moved one step closer yesterday to opening the 1990 World Championships and the 1992 Olympics to Michael Jordan and other highly paid NBA stars.
In Frankfurt, FIBA's governing board recommended rules changes that would make professional men and women players eligible for Olympic and world championship basketball tournaments. Any such rules changes could not be implemented in time for the Seoul Olympics in September. FIBA Secretary-General Bora Stankovic said the board called an extra FIBA congress for April 1989 in Munich to put the proposal to vote.
Stankovic said chances were excellent that the full FIBA congress would accept the recommendation. FIBA has 173 member federations and a simple majority of those present at the congress is required to pass the move. Stankovic said the governing board approved the proposal, 18-4, with the United States, Soviet Union, Cuba and Bulgaria casting the negative votes.
"We of course know the U.S. would win everything for the time being, but we also think that the only way the others can improve is by playing against the best," Stankovic said . . .
The International Olympic Committee next week will discuss in Calgary steps to punish nations who boycott the Olympics for political reasons. The discussion comes despite this year's breakthrough for the Seoul Olympics in which all but six of the 167 member countries have said they will attend.
IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch has backed off his earlier suggestion of banning boycotting nations from the next Olympics because this would further harm the athletes victimized by the boycott, but it is likely his proposal of withholding IOC funds will be adopted.