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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Be an effing owner!

If I was an NBA player, free to play and sign with any team in the league, would I play for the Dallas Mavericks? No.
Seems kind of strange. They just won the NBA title, are in contention every year, have one of the top 5 players in the game, Dirk Nowitzki,  a hall of fame point guard, Jason Kidd, and many other great pieces.

But, they also have a crazy, over bearing, interfering owner.
Would I want to coach that team? No
Would I want to be the general manager? No.
I don't think I could even stand to be a fan.
Yes, it is admirable that the owner does whatever he thinks he can to put a winner on the floor. The problem comes with the "he thinks" part of that equation.

 Mark Cuban is great for sports. He could be great.  He is passionate.  He lives and dies with his teams fortunes. The fans love him. He makes sure they are entertained. He does whatever HE thinks he can to make his team better, and a winner. The problem is, he doesn't let the people he pays to do those jobs actually do what THEY  think is the right thing. That is the flaw in his strategy,  if you can call it a strategy. If he wants to be the coach, and gm..then he should be it. Otherwise, he should butt out. It is not his place to go to the players and do what the coach and GM are paid to do.

 Yes, he owns the team,  he has..sort of,  the right to do as he pleases, but,  is that good for the team, and would I want to participate on that team?
This is something he readily admits he does,  and makes no apologies for that.

 From the 60 Minutes interview above:

"one of the players refers to you as that psycho on the bench."

"So. someones got to be."

A young Mark  Cuban,  at 12, sold garbage bags,  door to door.
 Mark Cuban has always been the consummate salesman.

But what is he selling now? Contempt..and lack of respect.

 "I've been a basketball junkie my entire life".

"the best part of being a billionaire is shooting hoops with NBA stars".

Those are interesting thoughts,  but he isn`t a player.  He isn`t the coach and he isn`t the General Manager. He is the owner. Of course, he wants to be all four. But he can`t. All his money in the world cannot buy him that.

Mark Cuban, as cocky and defiant as they come. 

 Owners don`t belong in the locker room. Nor do the belong on the sidelines, or the bench. Just as the owner of a factory does not belong on the shop floor,  or tell the shop foreman how to run the shop, the owner of the team should not be involved in personnel decisions. He hires people to do that for him. If he is not satisfied with their performance,  then he fires them and hires others.

 The NBA has fined him more than a million dollars for bad behavior. But what is a million dollars to a man who is used to getting what he wants and is a self made multi billionaire?

Again,  from the 60 Minutes interview:

 "the thing about Mark Cuban is that he really doesn't care what people think about him,  is that true"É

"pretty much"

 Is he good for the game? yes ..and

Just this week,  he inteferred on a level which is now way over the line. It is probably not the first time he has done this, nor will it be the last, but the time has come where the league must step in and sanction him, with the threat of removing the team ownership from him. Will they do that? No, they will not.  But they should.

 In the above article, the actions of Cuban speak volumes how he steps over a line no owner of any business, let alone sports team, should.

Cuban acknowledged that the end came after a heated halftime exchange with Odom following the forward’s uninspired four minutes at Memphis on Saturday night.
“We had come back to get into the game. The guys were fired up in the locker room and he was emotionless,” Cuban said. “That was my trigger.”

 In this excerpt, he is admitting that he was in the locker room, addressing the players, which is neither his place, nor his job, nor his right to do.  No coach can exist if he is being usurped by the general manager, let alone the owner. 

“I just asked him, does he want to go for it or not. Is he in or is he out? I think he thought we were playing poker. I just didn’t get a commitment. And that was the end,” Cuban said before the game in his first public comments about Odom’s departure.

 Mark Cuban needs to be the owner, not anything else but. 

But blaming problems on Odom is over. In fact, Cuban said it should go the other way.
“You can’t put the mistakes we’ve made on Lamar. We’ve made mistakes, not him,” Cuban said. “If I’m going to be the guy who smiles with my hand on the trophy, I’ve got to be the guy who takes responsibility.”

He should take responsibility for his bad behavior and the bad example he sets by showing a total lack of respect for the coach,  the General Manager and the players. When he starts doing that, then he can be the owner of the team. He is the one making all the mistakes here. The mistakes are starting at the top.  Until such time, I say the league should suspend him from being in the arena, for starters.

“We have derailed ourselves to this point,” he said.

In actuality, Mark Cuban has derailed the team,  with years of interference that is not acceptable to anyone but himself.

The answer to my original questions. No, there is no amount of money that would be enough to make me want to play for, coach or be the General Manager of any team that he owns. It would never be worth the bother.

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