The Dallas Mavericks NBA franchise owned by Cuban is in a tight race to make the playoffs, which begin in mid-April.
Mark Cuban is passionate and outspoken, to say the least.
The many entrepreneurs who participate in the hit television show “Shark Tank” hope that he’ll invest in their businesses, not only for the funds he will bring but also for his advice and his direct approach, which could well prevent a company from making big strategic mistakes.
All those traits have made him one of the most popular faces in the National Basketball Association, almost as popular as the star players themselves. Cuban owns the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks and has transformed the franchise.
The Mavericks are currently in a tight race to make the playoffs which begin in mid-April. About 10 games from the end of the regular season, the question of which teams will make the cut and join the battle for the league championship is wide open.
Tension and Unknowns
Currently ranked eighth in the Western Conference, the Mavericks wouldn’t qualify for the playoffs if the regular season ended today. They would take part in the play-in tournament, which at the end of the regular season pits the teams seeded 7 through 10 in each conference against each other. These teams compete and two of them will join the top six teams in the playoffs.
It was in this tense context that the Mavericks faced the current champion Golden State Warriors on March 22. This game was very important since both teams were looking to avoid the play-in tournament. The Warriors are currently ranked sixth in the Western Conference and have two more wins than Dallas has.
If the Mavericks, Cuban’s team. had won the March 22 game against the Warriors, Dallas would be ahead. And it was this match between the two teams that angered Cuban. One massively sequence in the game proved massively consequential.
Toward the end of the third quarter, Golden State scored an uncontested dunk. As TV footage shows, no Mavericks player is on their side to defend against the shot. As both teams were coming back from a break, Dallas thought it had possession of the ball, so the team’s players were on Golden State’s side of the court.
For Cuban, this confusion, which resulted in two easy points for Golden State, is a colossal officiating error. The final score in the game was 127-125 in favor of the Warriors.
‘Worst Officiating Non Call Mistake’: Cuban
After the final whistle, the billionaire rushed to Twitter to give his version of the facts and criticize what he said was the “worst officiating non call mistake.”
“For those wondering about the play with 1:54 to go on the 3rd, let me explain what happened,” Cuban wrote. “The ref called Mavs ball. The announcer announced it. Then there was a timeout.
“During the time out the official changed the call and never told us. Then when they saw us line up as if it were our ball, he just gave the ball to the warriors. Never said a word to us. They got an easy basketball. Crazy that it would matter in a 2 point game.”
The Mavericks’ owner then blasted the referees: “Worst officiating non call mistake possibly in the history of the NBA . All they had to do was tell us and they didn’t.”
Sean Wright, the referees’ crew chief, told reporters that the referees originally signaled it was Golden State’s ball.
“There is a second signal, but that signal is for a mandatory timeout that was due to the Mavs,” Wright said.
Cuban told ESPN that he was going to file a protest.
He has 48 hours to file his claim, according to NBA rules. Commissioner Adam Silver will then notify both teams once the protest is received. They then have five days to send arguments supporting their positions.
Once the teams’ evidence has been received, the commissioner will then have five days to render his decision.
The last successful protest in the NBA came in January 2008, according to ESPN.