November 20, 2018

NBA Spares Mark Cuban from Ban [Video Discussion]

Mark Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks (NBA) Mark Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks (NBA) Photo Credit: Jerome Miron/USA TODAY Sports

Mark Cuban gets to keep his NBA team, the Dallas Mavericks, despite rampant team sexual harassment findings; Cuban donates $10 million

MIKE: The NBA decided not to ban Mark Cuban despite multiple sexual harassment charges that have arisen within the Mavericks organization. Keisha, did the NBA do the right thing here?

KEISHA: Well, there were two factors that Adam Silver the commissioner of the NBA pointed to as to why he chose this punishment for Mark Cuban. One, it was determined that Cuban wasn't involved directly in the harassment and two, Cuban was very transparent during the investigation process. And then after the report was issued or maybe while the report was being compiled that Cuban and the Mavericks instituted sweeping changes rather quickly to prevent this from happening again. But you know, I was really surprised and I found the punishment to be a little lenient especially given the extent of the allegations and the duration of this institutionalized behavior. And, I find it hard to believe that over the course of two decades that Mark Cuban didn't know anything, not even a whisper.

I just don't know how it could be this rampant. We're not talking about one or two cases where maybe it was kind of easy maybe to push it under the rug or there wouldn't be a chatter. But you know, you're talking about 15 women and maybe even more that had issues and you know, Mark, I'm sorry Adam Silver mentioned, Cuban's absenteeism which I found a little interesting because if my memory serves me correctly Mark Cuban was thought of to be one of the most hands-on owners in the NBA.

So I don't know how you can be hands-on but then not know that this is happening to you and you know in the era of this "me too" movement, I just thought that you know, we've seen actors and executives lose their jobs based on allegations alone, and then moving it to back to sports, you have the NCAA coaches have lost their jobs over the actions of their players and I'm not saying that Mark Cuban deserved to be banned or lost his team. But to me, writing a check for a billionaire is nothing. Ten million dollars to him it's not a lot. I mean it's gonna go to worthy causes and that they could use the money but I just don't feel as though the punishment fits the crime and just you know to sum it up, there's really not any amount of money that will ever equate to what these women experienced.

I mean, I've experienced it firsthand myself and there's not, it's not, it's one of the worst feelings that you can have as a woman and probably as a human being to be the target of sexual harassment and you know, I just hope that in addition to the fines that you know, Adam Silver did speak to I think the Board of Governors or he did send out a memo and in that memo he used language urging not mandating but strongly recommending that other teams look at their houses and make sure that they have their ducks in a row and that they have safeguards against.

MIKE: It's just a $10 million dollar slap on the wrist is the way that I see it. I think there certainly could have been a harsher penalty. Now, I'm not saying that they should have made Mark Cuban necessarily give up ownership of the team or I'm not sure what type of suspension or whether you can take away draft picks in a situation like this, but for him to go out and getting up granted he's giving this money to some good causes and it is 10 million dollars, but at the same time, I think that there could have definitely been a harsher penalty again. I don't know specifically what but I think that he certainly not only from our, but the Mavericks got off easy here. I think what's interesting with Mark Cuban is, remember, this is now someone who's become sort of this Golden Boy owner, right? Here's a guy that bought this team. He's the tech guy that became a multi-millionaire became a billionaire was able to buy the Dallas Mavericks.

And ironically if you look back, back in the early mid-thousands, mid-2000s, he was always in the doghouse with the NBA front office and he sort of changed that whole dynamic in the way that his relationship is with the owners and with other owners, and of course with the commissioner as well. I'm not saying that that's what necessarily contributed to this sort of easy slap on the wrist that he got but there's no question that some changes could have been made. And the final thing that I'll say is, you know Sports Illustrated came out with this article talking about these allegations, but think back in February of this year in the report that they have.

I think that some of this stuff that's been going on has even happened since that February article that was released in Sports Illustrated. So I think there's certainly some changes that the Mavericks definitely need to make and of course, Mark Cuban certainly made some mistakes here, but I think he's definitely got off a little bit easy.

KEISHA: Yeah. I mean, I definitely. I think and hope that he's learned his lesson because if something like this happens again, I think even the smallest of infraction or even hint of harassment could open another Pandora's Box for him and he won't get off easily. And, there's no way he could and I don't think Adam Commissioner, Adam Commissioner, I mean Commissioner Adam Silver wouldn't allow it.

MIKE: Right.

KEISHA: Adam Silver wouldn't be able to take that public hit on his image.

MIKE: Absolutely.

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