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#pounditThursday, May 13, 2021

Articles tagged: Mark Cuban

Rick Carlisle does not mind play-in tournament despite Doncic, Cuban criticisms

Rick Carlisle

Dallas Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle is zigging where the rest of his organization seems to be zagging.

Before his team’s game against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday, Carlisle addressed the divisive topic of the league’s upcoming play-in tournament.

“My take on it is this,” Carlisle said, per ESPN’s Tim MacMahon. “If it’s in place and it’s going to happen, it’s great, and you’ve got to embrace it. If you’re in a situation where you end up playing in a play-in tournament, that’s going to be a great experience. That’s how you’ve got to look at it.

“Now that said, everybody’s trying to avoid it,” he went on. “Everybody wants that. I don’t know that they’re going to call it going forward, that guaranteed playoff position, the one through six. But look, my attitude about it is simply that. If it’s there, you’ve got to love it, and you’ve got to do your best to avoid it.”

Carlisle’s comments are a sharp contrast from the other key figures on his team. Mavs star Luka Doncic recently called out the play-in format. Team owner Mark Cuban has also expressed his displeasure with the tournament. For what it’s worth, the Mavs are currently fifth in the West but only one game above the play-in zone.

The tournament has been a controversial topic among other teams as well. But Carlisle’s stance of “embrace it if you’re there, but try like heck to avoid it” does sound like a pretty reasonable take.

Mark Cuban has interesting quote about Doncic-Porzingis relationship

Mark Cuban

The Dallas Mavericks hoped they were putting together a superstar duo when they put Kristaps Porzingis and Luka Doncic together. While the pair haven’t been bad, the fit both on and off the court clearly hasn’t been seamless.

Mavericks owner Mark Cuban admitted Thursday in an appearance on 105.3 The Fan’s “K&C Masterpiece” that there are some “dust-ups” between Doncic and Porzingis, but it’s not something that worries Cuban.

“On the court they are fine,” Cuban said, via Mike Fisher of SI. “That’s not to say their aren’t dust-ups, because there are. I’d compare it to Jet and Dirk.”

Cuban remembered that 16 years ago, he paired point guard Jason Terry with star Dirk Nowitzki. The two initially did not get along at all, but ultimately won a title together and became good friends.

“Coaches coach, and coach (Rick Carlisle) kind of runs the show,” Cuban added. “So everything gets worked out on the court. … KP and Luka get along fine. It’s just that they’re different people. They like to do different things.”

It’s not necessarily a problem if Doncic and Porzingis aren’t close. Combined, they’re averaging 49.1 points and 17.3 rebounds per game for the Mavericks, who are in the running for a play-in spot at the moment. On the other hand, there are reports that the team has checked in on the trade value of one of them. In the end, it may not be a marriage that works long-term.

Stan Van Gundy takes shot at Mark Cuban over play-in tournament criticism

Stan Van Gundy

Stan Van Gundy thinks that Mark Cuban’s criticisms about the NBA’s upcoming play-in tournament are pretty rich.

Cuban, the Dallas Mavericks owner, recently voiced disagreement with the play-in, which will see the seventh through tenth seeds in each conference compete separately for the final two playoff spots. The New Orleans Pelicans coach Van Gundy said Sunday that Cuban had actually pushed for the idea.

“I thought it was funny that Mark Cuban, who I absolutely love, pushed it,” said Van Gundy, per USA TODAY Sports. “Not only did he vote for it, but he pushed it. And now that they’re sitting where they are, they don’t like it.”

Cuban’s Mavs are currently seventh in the West, putting them in the play-in zone. His criticism was that the play-in would exacerbate the stresses of the condensed schedule this season. You can read Cuban’s full comments here.

Van Gundy’s Pelicans are a bit further behind, sitting 3 games back of the play-in zone at 25-32. His remarks were probably slightly in jest since he did say he is fond of Cuban. But as someone who was privy to the negotiations for the play-in tournament when they happened, Van Gundy can see the irony in Cuban seemingly changing his tune.

Lamar Odom issues warning to Mark Cuban over foot incident

Lamar Odom

One of Lamar Odom’s final acts towards the sad end of his career involved a totally unprofessional tenure with the Dallas Mavericks.

Odom was traded to Dallas ahead of the 2011-2012 season against his wishes. He literally cried when he heard the Lakers were trading him. Odom reportedly abused drugs while a member of the Mavericks, didn’t play anywhere near his previous levels, and actually got booed. He eventually was benched by the team and then they severed ties before the season was up.

During his time with the Mavs, team owner Mark Cuban tried to motivate Odom. Odom says that included Cuban putting his foot on Odom one time, which the former forward did not appreciate.

“Only way that could have possibly worked is if he was like my father, or uncle … where I was f—ing up that bad where he kicked me. It wasn’t a karate kick, just a little nudge to my shin. But he did it with his foot,” Odom recalled in a recent interview with Vlad TV.

Odom acknowledges how poorly he played with Dallas and says he could apologize to Cuban for it.

“I was playing so bad and playing so bad for the marriage at that time I could possibly say to Mark Cuban, ‘I’m sorry, I could see where you had to prove your point. Because you’re paying me a lot of money. And I was performing way under where I should have been. So I could excuse you for that,'” Odom said.

But Odom warned Cuban about his conduct with the foot move.

“But don’t ever do that to a black man again. Because he might f— you up,” Odom said he would tell Cuban, via VladTV.

No other players have had similar complaints about Cuban in the past, so this may have been a 1-time thing with a player who was a colossal disaster, not that it excuses the owner.

The incident may have been part of the halftime confrontation we learned about that led to Odom’s ultimate departure from the team.

Luka Doncic disagrees with NBA having play-in tournament

Luka Doncic

If the NBA regular season ended today, the Dallas Mavericks would first have to win a play-in tournament before clinching a postseason spot. Something about that does not sit right with Mavs star Luka Doncic.

After Dallas lost to the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday, Doncic aired some of his grievances about the NBA having a play-in tournament this season.

“I don’t understand the idea of the play-in,” Doncic said, per ESPN’s Tim MacMahon. “You play 72 games to get in the playoffs, then maybe you lose two in a row and you’re out of the playoffs. I don’t see the point of that.”

On Tuesday, Mavs owner Mark Cuban backed up Doncic’s opinion about the play-in tournament.

“I get why the NBA is doing it,” Cuban told ESPN. “But if we are going to be creative because of COVID, we should go straight up 1-20 and let the bottom 4 play in. This is the year particularly to do it since the 10 games cut [from the normal 82-game schedule] were in conference.

“The worst part of this approach is it doubles the stress of the compressed schedule,” Cuban went on. “Rather than playing for a playoff spot and being able to rest players as the standings become clearer, teams have to approach every game as a playoff game to either get into or stay in the top 6 since the consequences, as Luka said, are enormous. So players are playing more games and more minutes in fewer days.”

The NBA first debuted the play-in tournament last season in response to the unprecedented circumstances created by the COVID-19 season stoppage and subsequent resumption in the Orlando, Fla. bubble. The format last year saw the eighth and ninth seeds in the Western Conference play in a double-elimination tournament. There was no play-in for the Eastern Conference because no team finished within four games back of the eighth seed.

This year, the play-in tournament format is slightly different. The seventh through tenth-seeded teams in each conference will automatically go to tournament play to determine who gets the final two playoff spots.

The Mavs are currently the No. 7 seed in the West and cannot make the playoffs outright from that spot as they did last season. There is still some disruption with having a 72-game season as opposed to the regular 82. But Doncic and Cuban do have a point in that a play-in tournament makes less sense than it did last season and puts an unnecessary strain on the players. Meanwhile, the top six seeds in each conference will get an extra week of rest before the postseason from not having to go to the play-in.

The NBA does like having the play-in to generate more excitement. But the concept clearly is not popular with everyone this season.

Mark Cuban says Mavericks will accept Dogecoin cryptocurrency for purchases

Mark Cuban

In case there was any doubt, Mark Cuban is officially the spiciest meme lord among all the NBA owners.

Cuban announced this week that his Dallas Mavericks will begin accept the popular cryptocurrency Dogecoin for purchases of tickets and merchandise.

Cuban was asked why they’re making the move and gave a simple response.

“Because we can!” said Cuban, per Isabelle Lee of Markets Insider. “Sometimes in business, you have to do things that are fun.”

Dogecoin, which is currently trading around $0.05 per coin, began in 2013 as a joke based around the well-known Doge meme. It has since gained legitimacy though after boosts from celebrity backers such as Tesla CEO Elon Musk and is up nearly 2,000 percent in just the last year alone.

The Mavs began accepting Bitcoin, the most recognized cryptocurrency, in 2019. But Cuban is far from the only NBA figure to delve into these waters.

Mark Cuban denies that Kristaps Porzingis is on trade block

Mark Cuban

Kristaps Porzingis is staying put in Dallas if you want to take Mark Cuban’s word for it.

The Dallas Mavericks owner Cuban denied the rumors that emerged this week suggesting that the team has gauged the trade market for Porzingis.

“It’s not accurate,” said Cuban, per Brad Townsend of the Dallas Morning News. “We have not discussed him in a trade at all. Has not happened.”

The 25-year-old Porzingis has not quite looked like himself this season since returning from meniscus surgery. His surface numbers (20.5 points and 8.2 rebounds per game) seem strong. But Porzingis is playing extremely poorly on the defensive end and has yet to re-establish himself as a reliable No. 2 option behind Luka Doncic. Dallas is also under .500 (14-15) on the year.

The trade rumors about Porzingis did seem to be pretty believable. But if anything, the Mavs might be better off waiting until Porzingis brings his trade value back up before considering such a dramatic move.

NBA will require teams to play national anthem before games

Adam Silver

The Dallas Mavericks have chosen not to play the national anthem prior to home games this season, and the NBA is not going to allow that to continue.

The NBA announced in a statement on Wednesday that all teams will be required to play the national anthem before games going forward.

“With NBA teams now in the process of welcoming fans back into their arenas, all teams will play the national anthem in keeping with longstanding league policy,” NBA chief communications officer Mike Bass said.

A story that was published in The Athletic on Tuesday called attention to the fact that the Mavericks have not played the anthem before home games since the start of the season. Team owner Mark Cuban chose not to comment on the story, but he released a statement on Wednesday saying the Mavericks will comply with the policy.

Cuban said in 2017 that he would be standing for the anthem and expected his players to do the same. He changed his stance last year and explained why in an interview. Cuban has shown he is not concerned with alienating fans who will be upset by this decision.

It was initially believed that the Mavericks could continue skipping the anthem, as the NBA has been allowing teams to decide how they want to conduct pregame activities amid the coronavirus pandemic. However, league officials obviously want the national anthem to be played.

Here is why Mavericks stopped playing national anthem before games

Mark Cuban

The Dallas Mavericks have not played the national anthem prior to home games this season, and now we have a better idea of why.

Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has chosen not to play the anthem since the start of the season. The matter received attention on Tuesday when The Athletic published a story about it. Cuban said he made the decision in November but declined to comment further.

Shams Charania of The Athletic provided some context on Wednesday. He was told by a source that Cuban made the decision because many people feel the anthem does not represent them. The Mavs want to come up with a way to represent people from all communities at their games.

It’s unclear what the plan will be going forward. The NBA is leaving it up to teams how they want to conduct pregame activities this season, so the Mavs won’t be forced to change anything.

Cuban said in 2017 that he would be standing for the anthem and expected his players to do the same. He changed his stance last year and explained why in an interview. Cuban has shown he is not concerned with alienating fans who will be upset by this decision.

Mark Cuban not playing national anthem before Mavericks games

Mark Cuban

Mark Cuban found one way to deal with the national anthem issue.

Cuban’s Dallas Mavericks have not played the national anthem prior to its home games this NBA season. Though the team has not played the anthem for home games all season, the matter only began to receive attention after The Athletic publicized the situation on Tuesday.

Cuban told The New York Times’ Marc Stein that it was his decision and he made it in November. He declined to comment further.

The NBA has had a rule in place since the 1980s requiring players to stand for the anthem. NBA players did not kneel for the anthem when Colin Kaepernick first began doing so in the NFL in 2016. However, as gestures in the name of social justice became more widespread in 2020, kneeling became commonplace when the NBA season resumed in the Orlando bubble last year.

Last year, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver did not enforce the rule requiring players to stand for the anthem. The rule has not been enforced this season either.

The league is leaving it up to teams how they want to conduct pregame activities this season given the pandemic circumstances, which is why Dallas has been able to avoid playing the anthem. The Mavs only recently began allowing fans to attend games, becoming just the 11th team in the league to have fans this season.

In 2017, Cuban said he would be standing for the anthem and that he expected the Mavericks’ players to do the same.

“This is America, and I’m proud of people who speak out civilly. That’s who we are as a country,” Cuban said at the time. “I’ll be standing there with my hand over my heart. I think the players will be [standing]. I expect them to be.”

Last year, Cuban’s stance changed.

“If they were taking a knee and they were being respectful, I’d be proud of them. Hopefully I’d join them,” Cuban said in June 2020.

He explained his change in viewpoint.

“Because I think we’ve learned a lot since 2017,” he told OTL in June. “I think we’ve evolved as a country. And this is really a unique point in time where we can grow as a society, we can grow as a country and become far more inclusive and become far more aware of the challenges that minority communities go through.

“So I’ll stand in unison with our players, whatever they choose to do. But again, when our players in the NBA do what’s in their heart, when they do what they feel represents who they are and look to move this country forward when it comes to race relationships, I think that’s a beautiful thing and I’ll be proud of them.”

Cuban has already shown that he is not concerned with alienating fans who will be upset by this decision.