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Mark Cuban partied with Chandler Parsons after signing him to offer sheet

Mark-Cuban-Chandler-Parsons

There are not many owners in the NBA who can relate to players like Mark Cuban can. Like many professional athletes, Cuban came from nothing and earned himself a fortune. The way Cuban went about signing Chandler Parsons to an offer sheet on Wednesday night is another example of why he’s an awesome boss.

Several people who were at the same club as Cuban and Parsons posted photos on social media. Cuban literally brought the offer sheet with him to the club and then stuck around for a good time. Fansided passed along some of the tweets that show first-hand accounts of how it went down. They contain some NSFW language. The one from Chandler’s mom (@sadie1532) does not:

Parsons also shared his thoughts at the end of the night.

The three-year offer sheet is reportedly worth more than $45 million. The Houston Rockets have 72 hours to match it, but doing so would not leave them with money to make a run at free agents like Carmelo Anthony and Chris Bosh. After the night he had with Cuban, I’m sure Parsons is crossing his fingers the Rockets don’t match.

H/T Jimmy Traina’s The Big Buzz

Photo of Mark Cuban in Cleveland for LeBron James meeting?

Mark Cuban Cleveland

A photo of Mark Cuban in Cleveland made the rounds on Twitter Thursday, prompting speculation that the Dallas Mavericks owner was in town for a meeting with LeBron James’ agent, Rich Paul.

Cuban confirmed that he was in Cleveland, but he denied being there for a meeting about LeBron.

“I was there for a ‘Shark Tank’ commitment,” Cuban said in reference to his TV show via ESPN.

James’ agent reportedly met with multiple teams about potentially making a pitch to the MVP. The Mavs, Suns, Rockets and Cavs were said to be the teams who presented to Paul. When you all that up, it seems a little too convenient for Cuban to be in Cleveland, regardless of his explanation.

Photo: Twitter/22LaxFan

Mark Cuban apologizes to Trayvon Martin’s family

mark-cubanMark Cuban has taken a ton of heat for the remarks he made at a conference in Nashville this week about his personal prejudices. For the most part, the Dallas Mavericks owner has stood by his remarks and urged people to listen to the entire interview rather than analyzing snippets. But, on Thursday evening, Cuban decided to apologize to the family of Trayvon Martin.

One of the examples Cuban used about how he is “bigoted” in certain ways is that he would probably walk to the other side of the street if he saw a black kid wearing a hoodie late at night. He said he’d do the same if he saw a bald white guy covered in tattoos. As most of you know, a hoodie became a symbol for why Martin was shot and killed.

“In hindsight I should have used different examples,” Cuban wrote on Twitter. “I didn’t consider the Trayvon Martin family, and I apologize to them for that. Beyond apologizing to the Martin family, I stand by the words and substance of the interview.

“I think that helping people improve their lives, helping people engage with people they may fear or may not understand, and helping people realize that while we all may have our prejudices and bigotries we have to learn that it’s an issue that we have to control, that it’s part of my responsibility as an entrepreneur to try to solve it.”

You can read exchanges that Cuban had with a bunch of other people, including Jalen Rose and Bomani Jones, on his Twitter page.

Ultimately, many people are missing Cuban’s point. They’re focusing on the examples rather than the honesty and the message. Anyone who says they have never looked at someone and jumped to conclusions based on their appearance is lying. It’s simply human nature, and because of that we are all prejudiced in our own ways. Understanding that and making an effort to counter it — in your own mind — is important.

Mark Cuban: I’m ‘prejudiced’ and ‘bigoted’ in different ways

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Mark-Cuban-Blasts-NBA-for-Chris-Paul-TradeDallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban held a very honest Q&A session at Inc. Magazine’s GROWCO 2014 conference, a collection of small business owners, entrepreneurs and CEOs, in Nashville on Wednesday. His honesty when answering questions about the Donald Sterling situation has led to some criticism.

When the Sterling audio tape was first released, Cuban called the content of the tape “abhorrent” but also noted that kicking Sterling out of the NBA would be a “slippery slope.” On Wednesday, he admitted that he has his own personal prejudices like anyone else that he is constantly trying to fight.

“I also try not to be a hypocrite. I know I’m prejudiced. I know I’m bigoted in a lot of different ways,” Cuban said, per Mark Burns of The Sporting News. “I’ve said this before. If I see a black kid in a hoodie at night on the same side of the street, I’m probably going to walk to other side of the street. If I see a white guy with a shaved head and lots of tattoos, I’m going back to the other side of the street.”

[Related: Mark Cuban apologizes to Trayvon Martin's family]

Cuban has already been labeled a racist by some, but we can’t really fault him for being honest. If you describe a person as a “scary looking dude” based on the way he looks, you’re being prejudiced. Some people don’t have enough self awareness to realize that.

[Read more...]

Mark Cuban hired ex-FBI agent to review NBA referees after losing 2006 Finals

Mark CubanJohn Canzano of the Portland Oregonian has been doing some great work writing a five-part series on NBA referees. In part five of the series published last Friday, he looked into the lack of public accountability for the league’s referees.

In his story, Canzano brought up the controversial ending of Game 5 in the Clippers-Thunder series that saw several calls go against the Clippers, helping Oklahoma City pull off a win. He interviewed former coach/current broadcaster Jeff Van Gundy, who insists there is a human bias from referees against certain coaches and players. And then he brought up Mark Cuban, which is where the real meat came in.

Everyone knows that Cuban has had a long-standing problem with the league’s officials. He’s been fined $1.665 million for multiple offenses. He’s hired his own team of officials to review game tapes and send it to the league office to point out where their calls are wrong. And after his Dallas Mavericks lost the NBA Finals in 2006 to the Miami Heat — a series in which Dwyane Wade shot 97 free throws and the Heat took almost a third more than Dallas — Cuban hired a retired FBI agent to look into the league/referees.

According to Canzano, Cuban hired Warren Flagg, who currently runs an investigation and security firm, to investigate the league because he was considering a lawsuit. Flagg says he told Cuban that the Mavs owner could sue the league and that he would win the case. Cuban elected not to, realizing it was probably best for business to leave things alone.

Tim DonaghyFlagg was also hired by Tim Donaghy’s defense team to investigate the league’s officials during the point shaving scandal. He says the league refused to release its internal Donaghy investigation.

“They wanted this thing to be closed,” Flagg said, “and their story was that Tim was the only bad apple. I’ve never seen a cooperating witness so hammered and badgered. It was because the NBA was running the thing.

“I would like to see if (the NBA) did what it did a few years earlier when the refs were picked up for selling their first-class airline tickets. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure that out. I’ll bet they did. In that case, they (turned the officials against each other using the threat of termination). They said, ‘If you want to work, tell us what happened.’ If that Donaghy internal investigation ever gets leaked, it’s going to be like the performance-enhancing drug investigation in baseball.”

Can you imagine that? The NBA covering something up that would have been as explosive as the Mitchell Report. He’s probably right, too. The league likes to keep everything quiet and confidential. They don’t like anyone questioning the referees. They like to control the message and don’t want anyone speaking negatively about them. If a coach or player complains about officiating, the league fines the person. Seems more like a dictatorship than world of fairness.

The NBA has rebounded from the Tim Dongahy scandal and managed to instill the faith of the fans in their product. Most fans believe the outcome of games is determined by the players on the court, not other factors such as calls by the referees. But there’s no doubt that referees can heavily influence games by calling fouls on one team’s star players and not the other’s, and by calling fouls and putting one team at the free throw line more than the other. The league also controls because they have the power to suspend players, such as Zach Randolph in Game 7 of the Grizzlies-Thunder series.

I have no doubt that the league is covering up a lot of bad stuff when it comes to the Donaghy investigation. Unlike baseball, though, the officiating problem is unlikely to be exposed.

H/T Pro Basketball Talk

Mark Cuban: Kicking Donald Sterling out is a ‘slippery slope’

Mark CubanMark Cuban has been extremely careful about addressing the Donald Sterling situation since the first audio recording surfaced, which is unusual for the typically outspoke Dallas Mavericks owner. He finally broke his silence on Monday. While Cuban blasted Sterling for his racist views and called what he said “abhorrent,” he also said kicking the Los Angeles Clippers owner out of the NBA would be a “slippery slope.”

“What Donald said was wrong,” Cuban told Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News. “It was abhorrent. There’s no place for racism in the NBA, any business I’m associated with, and I don’t want to be associated with people who have that position.

“But at the same time, that’s a decision I make. I think you’ve got to be very, very careful when you start making blanket statements about what people say and think, as opposed to what they do. It’s a very, very slippery slope.”

Cuban seemed to be hinting at protecting freedom of speech. He has a point — people just don’t want to hear it right now. I’m not saying Sterling shouldn’t be kicked out of the league, but I understand Cuban being concerned with the precedent it sets.

“Again, there’s no excuse for his positions,” Cuban added. “There’s no excuse for what he said. There’s no excuse for anybody to support racism. There’s no place for it in our league, but there’s a very, very, very slippery slope.

“If it’s about racism and we’re ready to kick people out of the league, OK? Then what about homophobia? What about somebody who doesn’t like a particular religion. What about somebody who’s anti-semitic What about a xenophobe? In this country, people are allowed to be morons.”

The bigger issue here is that Sterling has a checkered history. We knew he was racist before V. Stiviano allegedly recorded him making mind-boggling comments about how he gives his players cars, food and houses. He doesn’t deserve to be a team owner anyway, so I don’t think it’s as slippery a slope as Cuban thinks. Sterling needs to go for reasons beyond his most recent racist rant.

Mark Cuban explains why he won’t do interviews on Donald Sterling

Mark CubanMany NBA figures came out to decry Donald Sterling over the past few days, but the usually outspoken Mark Cuban was not one of them.

We heard from LeBron James, Doc Rivers, and even Michael Jordan, but not Cuban. That’s surprising.

On Sunday, the Dallas Mavericks owner and business mogul used his Twitter account to explain why:

Cuban, who has never been shy about sharing his opinion on anything tech, financial or sports-related, drew some criticism for not speaking up about Sterling.

Reporter Mike Freeman tweeted the following quote from an NFL official who wondered why Cuban hasn’t said anything:

That point is particularly notable because Cuban recently expressed caution about the NFL’s ability to succeed in the future.

I don’t care what Cuban says over Twitter to defend himself. It’s frankly disappointing that he has not spoken up about this. Cuban is a leader and should be offering more of an opinion on the matter than he has.