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Mark Cuban says he doesn’t care whether fans attends Clippers games, open to dissenting in Donald Sterling vote

May 30, 2014, 9:55 AM EST

Mark Cuban Mark Cuban

Mark Cuban has warned about the slippery slope of removing Donald Sterling as owner of the Clippers. As Cuban explained, he found Sterling’s words abhorrent, such severe punishment for a private conversation that was possibly illegally recorded doesn’t exactly thrill the Mavericks owner.

Cuban also said he might have to be a hypocrite in the June 3 vote, indicating he’d vote against Sterling anyway.

First of all, that vote might not happen. If the sale of the team to Steve Ballmer gets approved first – it’s trending that way – there would be no need to remove Sterling as owner. The team would already be Ballmer’s.

But if the vote happens, Cuban is a real wildcard.

Cuban on opposition to a potential vote against removing Sterling, as transcribed by Mike Matvey of the New York Daily News:

“F— ’em. I don’t care if nobody shows up to games. If I think the ethical thing to do is to vote against 29 other guys, I will,” Cuban said on SiriusXM Radio

I’m convinced Adam Silver has the necessary votes to remove Sterling. I can’t imagine him going down this road with out the assurance of 22 owners to support him.

I’m not convinced every owner would vote to remove Sterling, though. That’s not because they support what Sterling said, but because they don’t want to lower the barriers to them someday losing their own team.

However, I’ve always believed the final vote would be unanimous. All it would take is Silver telling the dissenters their votes would be leaked. Why take that public backlash for a losing cause?

Maybe Cuban is just crazy enough to do it.

More likely, he won’t have to make that choice – but it would be interesting if the vote actually occurs and he’s confronted with the decision.

By the way, the players union should remember Cuban’s quote during the next Collective Bargaining Agreement impasse. If NBA owners don’t care about revenue – good luck making money without fans in a huge market – why should the players sacrifice salary to make the league profitable?

  1. blantoncollier - May 30, 2014 at 10:06 AM

    Mark Cuban is a smart guy. But he should just shut up already.

    • spursareold - May 30, 2014 at 10:31 AM

      I don’t think he’s all that smart. He had one good idea about 20 years ago, and sold at the VERY top of the internet bubble. I just think he’s an attention whore of the highest order.

      • teabone413 - May 30, 2014 at 11:45 AM

        not much to say but this….

        “…when ignorant folks want to advertise their ignorance you don’t really have to do anything, you just let them talk…”

      • kinggw - May 30, 2014 at 1:49 PM

        Spot on commentary, I think all of this has been done to keep him in the news.

    • don444 - Jun 13, 2014 at 11:55 AM

      Your sentence structure strongly suggests that you’re anything but smart.

  2. chunkala - May 30, 2014 at 10:15 AM

    Future hypothetical:

    Thunder owner thinks all vegetarians are dumb. Silver announces that Thunder will be put up for sale amidst insensitive comments. This is what owners want to deal with in the future?

    • phillyguyindc - May 30, 2014 at 10:33 AM

      Another thing I believe they are concerned about is the leagues “interpretation” of the rule that if one of the owners of an ownership group is out then they all are. I think that interpretation was a stretch anyway just to keep Shelly sterling from owning the team but I don’t think ny owner would sign up for the possibility of being punished as a result of another person in the ownership groups actions.

    • heat256 - May 30, 2014 at 11:29 AM

      Big difference between a silly comment and a racist one that only reinforces the unspoken truth about the guy saying it. Stern should have booted that clown years ago. The public is smart enough to differentiate between a stupid, throwaway statement and one that deeply offends a large group of people. I believe Silver will be a much more discerning and open minded commissioner than Stern.

    • asimonetti88 - May 30, 2014 at 11:40 AM

      There’s a difference between saying you think vegetarians are dumb, and saying they are not allowed to come to your games.

      • sportsfan18 - May 30, 2014 at 3:55 PM

        There is also a big difference between telling your girlfriend not to bring a black to the games vs. telling your employees they can’t bring a black person to the games, which he did NOT do.

        what we can’t do in America when running a business is deny access to blacks just because they are black and his company did NOT do that. they allowed blacks to the games.

        sterling and clippers employees did not turn blacks away from the games.

        his girlfriend is NOT an employee of the clippers. his company did NOT deny access to games for black people.

    • imnotyourbuddyguy - May 30, 2014 at 12:01 PM

      Only someone naive to think the NBA is forcing the sale because of insensitive remarks would come up with a post like this, how many times does it need to be said? The NBA acted because the remarks were going to cost them money and caused to much friction with the NBAPA.

      Would comments about vegetarians cause the NBA to start losing sponsors? Would the NBAPA get bent over vegetarian comments? No?
      Then what the heck are you talking about?

      I heard the same stupid “slippery slope” argument when MLB finally removed Marge Scott, and what has happened since then? Nothing, not even a shady Jeff Loria is threatened by the league.

      Here’s another “future hypothetical”
      30 People agree to the NBA constitution, and when one of the 30 step out of line and hurt profits the other 29 can vote to remove that person. Because it says so in the signed constitution. Oh wait that’s not a hypothetical that’s reality.

      It’s ridiculous how many people want to protect Sterlings rights while ignoring the other owners rights and the fact that they all signed and agreed to the NBA constitution.

      • bougin89 - May 30, 2014 at 12:35 PM

        Oh… It… We… have no response. That was perfect.

    • paleihe - May 30, 2014 at 12:04 PM

      Again, this isn’t about what Sterling said.

      Sponsors were dropping out, that means less money coming in. This wasn’t an ethical issue for the NBA, it was business.

  3. stoudemelo - May 30, 2014 at 10:21 AM

    Yes because vegetarians had been enslaved and repressed in the past. It’s completely the same thing.

    • sixerstrong - May 30, 2014 at 10:39 AM

      It may sound silly now, but 10 years ago it sounded silly for an owner to lose his team because of what was said in a private conversation.

      • urodaddy07 - May 31, 2014 at 2:33 AM

        Don’t know why this comment has gotten this many thumbs-ups. That’s a stupid statement because the issue of how his statements became public knowledge is irrelevant now and would have been irrelevant 10years ago. I’m seeing all of the Donald Sterling fans come out after this post. Lets not forget that this man who dislikes me because I’m black; me, the same guy who puts money in his pocket; is going to walk away with a of of dough.
        Anyway, the NBA has a legitimate business reason to get rid of him. Cuban is supposed to be a smart businessman; so he should recognize that reality. I also this this a good lesson to other owners; you own a part of a franchise. Its not like your Bentley that you can do with as you wish and your action affect not only your local market but the whole franchise.So, you can’t do anything with with your team.

      • sixerstrong - Jun 2, 2014 at 2:10 PM

        @urodaddy07 The last thing I wanted was my statement to in any way support what Sterling said or did, and frankly, this is long overdue. It should have been done after Sterling had to pay out the largest housing discrimination penalty in history. The point that I was trying to make is how much and how quickly things have changed, and what sounds silly now may not be so outrageous in the future.

    • rohlo - May 30, 2014 at 2:47 PM

      this has nothign to do with slavery moron! how can you move forward if you keep throwing the past up! you have no idea how that felt just as most whites dotn know how it felt to be slave owners..and check the real history partner.you will see that the africans sold their own people to the whites as slaves.. it still amazes me that it never gets brought up that blacks were sold out by their own and they always wanna blame whitey!! get over it! this is 2014!! you dont see all the whites jumping on tv when an african american commits a crime against a white person do you???????

  4. spursareold - May 30, 2014 at 10:32 AM

    Yes, because vegetarians compose the largest segment of your fan base.

    • fanofthegame79 - May 30, 2014 at 11:12 AM

      Don’t forget employee base!

      • bkbell3 - May 30, 2014 at 12:05 PM

        Employee base,yes but no where close to the largest segment of the fan base.smh

      • spursareold - May 30, 2014 at 12:18 PM

        I’m not talking about the rich lizard people at the arenas, I’m talking ACTUAL fans.

  5. csbanter - May 30, 2014 at 11:03 AM

    There’s something deeper going on with Mark Cuban. He made statements last week which he like everyone else is entitled to do. Seems like this Donald Sterling thing has become personal for him….

  6. nicofthenorthstar - May 30, 2014 at 11:10 AM

    Hooray for mark Cuban. One man standing apart from the mob and trying to inject some reason into this hypocritical, reactionary “discussion.”

    • imnotyourbuddyguy - May 30, 2014 at 12:05 PM

      Mark Cuban’s stand would cost the league billions. Horray for losing money? Cuban is a joke, he’s flipped flopped already, and now says this when the point is moot.

    • kinggw - May 30, 2014 at 1:59 PM

      He’s not trying to inject any reason. Spursareold said it best,he’s doing what he’s always does and that is attention whoring.

      Furthermore, he’s isn’t standing apart on anything. In all of his comments has he taken a definitive stance? No, he hasn’t. He either supports Sterling or he doesn’t. Why does he continuously need to tell us that he’s on the fence?

  7. therealdave123 - May 30, 2014 at 1:06 PM

    Cuban should just focus on Shark Tank and leave this to the adults.

  8. suckit619 - May 30, 2014 at 1:19 PM

    He’s just backing up another member of the tribe…

  9. mblue24 - May 30, 2014 at 1:57 PM

    Cuban is a smart business man and I have to agree with him. screw the NBA and Silver. they are trying to control someone else’s business.

  10. katra2logic - May 30, 2014 at 3:08 PM

    Losing Sterling is like losing a bad cold… no loss at all…

  11. lgwelsh1 - May 30, 2014 at 3:50 PM

    Mark Cuban is 100% correct, he sees the BIG PICTURE. His comments sound very personal regarding Donald Sterling and they should be. He is an owner of an NBA franchise, a very successful one at that.

    I bet behind closes doors more owners feel the same way Mark does, the difference is Mark isn’t afraid to speak his mind to the public regardless of the backlash.

  12. hvoigt21 - May 31, 2014 at 12:07 AM

    I like Mark Cuban. I get the feeling he is not a whimp and he doesn’t mind speaking what’s on his mind. I gather that he doesn’t like bullies and he doesn’t let anyone tell him what to do.

    I don’t know about you but as a man I like those traits. He doesn’t do something because it’s politically correct. Mark Cuban does things because it’s the right thing to do.

    He speaks his mind and he is not afraid of what,people think.

    • urodaddy07 - May 31, 2014 at 2:38 AM

      I have a lot of respect for Cuban as well. But I have to disagree on this point. What exactly is wrong with getting rid of Sterling. He is bad for business. Period

      • don444 - Jun 13, 2014 at 11:59 AM

        It can be easily argued that the issue is much, much more complicated than that all things considered, but it’s also obvious that the nuance of such arguments would be WAY over your head.

  13. don444 - Jun 13, 2014 at 11:57 AM

    I don’t believe Cuban would have voted for Sterling in the end, but there’s no doubt that if anyone within that circle has the balls to do such a thing it’s clearly him.

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