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Adam Silver ranked most influential

NBA commissioner Adam Silver is the most influential person in sports business, while the clout of the NFL's Roger Goodell apparently has waned, according to an annual list published Monday by SportsBusiness Daily.

It's a status that not even Silver's predecessor David Stern, who retired in February, ever achieved.

ESPN president John Skipper moved up one spot to No. 2. New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft filled the third spot, the highest an owner has ever appeared on the list, and the fifth year in a row he has appeared in the top 10.

Outgoing Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig and his replacement, Rob Manfred, were fourth on the list, followed by Goodell.

Goodell, who has had a rough year surrounded by criticism over how he has handled discipline, is as low on the list as he has ever been. He was also fifth in 2006, during his first season as commissioner.

NCAA president Mark Emmert, who has lost significant influence as the O'Bannon lawsuit has stirred up the debate of compensation for former and current athletes, fell to 41st on the list, the lowest he has been.

Sports shoe and apparel company executives also were recognized. Nike CEO Mark Parker moved up to No. 17, one spot ahead of his appearance last year. Under Armour founder and CEO Kevin Plank continued his climb -- No. 21 this year, up from No. 26 in 2013 and No. 32 in 2012. He debuted on the list at No. 42 in 2009.

Newcomers on the list include Ari Emanuel and Patrick Whitesell, co-CEOs of William Morris Endeavor, who landed at No. 7 after they oversaw the purchase of sports agency IMG for $2.4 billion last year. Steve Ballmer, who bought the Clippers for $2 billion this year, takes the No. 13 spot, and Harvey Levin, founder of TMZ, is 50th.

The list has been published since 2004.

LeBron James, together with Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert, came in 26th on the list. It is the first time a current athlete has been on SBD's list.