Dallas Mavericks: David Stern
In fact, owner Mark Cuban had the Dallas Mavericks’ video department send several clips to the league office last week showing examples of Nowitzki not getting whistles that should have been blown.
“We actually did a video where we circled his elbow so they could see it,” Cuban said. “We’ll see what happens. They’re doing their best, I’m sure.”
That video clearly didn’t have its intended effect Friday night. Nowitzki publicly complained about not getting a foul call on a potential go-ahead shot late in the game, the second time in the last few weeks he’s vented to the media about a missed call on a crunch-time shot when he firmly believed he was hit on the elbow.
The Mavs typically send a video of several disputed calls after every game, but it’s rare for them to isolate a specific issue that they consider a troubling trend.
Cuban said the response from the league is typically to “say it’s a tough call and they’re sorry they missed it.”
“What are you gonna do?” Cuban said. “It’s the same conversation for 14 years, so I’ll wait until February.”
Cuban has vowed to get the final fine before commissioner David Stern’s retirement becomes official in February. The elbow tapping on Nowitzki’s one-legged fadeaway gives Cuban a worthy cause.
Carlisle’s initial reaction when asked about the controversy was to distance himself from the situation.
“I’m not going to get into it because it’s not my business and I’ve got other, more important things to concentrate on,” Carlisle said.
However, after thinking it through, Carlisle weighed in on the issue with a thoughtful, carefully worded take.
“As President of the NBA Coaches Association, I am always going to work hard to protect coaches and decisions coaches make to protect their teams,” Carlisle wrote in a text message. “The NBA will undoubtedly examine all the facts before making any decision on this matter. The fact that San Antonio played such a great game and were in position to win with their depth is extremely impressive.”
With the Spurs in a stretch of four games in five nights, coach Gregg Popovich sent stars Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker along with key role player Danny Green home on a commercial flight Thursday to allow them to rest for Saturday's game against the West-leading Memphis Grizzlies. The Spurs lost to the Heat, 105-100, in a game that was in doubt during the final minute.
Still, this game is a little bit different. The game will be played primarily under NBA rules. As we saw in the Olympics, the rules differences between the NBA and FIBA -- the governing body of basketball everywhere outside the NBA -- aren’t that great. There will be three notable differences.
* There is no charge circle underneath the basket. Yet with NBA commissioner David Stern in the building for the game, will anyone really want to test the depth of the league’s commitment to their new no-flopping rules?
|Chuck Cooperstein shares a quick update on the Mavericks' European excursion.
* On free throws, there is no early entry into the lane on the shot. The ball has to hit the rim first.
There will be two NBA officials (Zach Zarba and Sean Wright) and one official assigned by FIBA. Both Zarba and Wright will work the game in Barcelona on Tuesday night as well.
Mavericks expected starting lineup:
SF Shawn Marion
PF Dirk Nowitzki
C Chris Kaman
SG OJ Mayo
PG Darren Collison
The Dallas Mavericks, Williams' other suitor once free agency begins on Sunday, couldn't be as giving or else they'd face a stiff tampering fine from the office of David Stern.
So the Texas Rangers, Williams' favorite baseball team, took responsibility for letting the local lad who starred at The Colony High School know that the folks in North Texas didn't forget his birthday.
Apparently Darin' for Deron (darinforderon.com), the grassroots campaign to bring Williams home to the Mavs, made the Rangers aware that it was Williams' birthday and that it'd be nice to put a birthday wish on the giant outfield video screen. And so the Rangers did. The club put up a happy birthday Deron message with an added note: "Be A Maverick!"
It didn't go unnoticed by Donnie Nelson, the Mavs' president of basketball operations, who met with reporters Wednesday to discuss Thursday's NBA draft.
"Our friends up the street, the Rangers," Nelson said, "that was a very nice touch and very much appreciated."
David Stern and deputy commissioner Adam Silver said Wednesday that they are no longer sure they want to see NBA veterans playing in the Olympics beyond this summer's Games in London and will look into a 23-and-younger age limit, as soccer does.
The news came as a welcome surprise to Cuban, who touted a 22-and-younger age limit as recently as April.
"Yes, I'm thrilled," Cuban told ESPNDallas.com on Wednesday night.
The most outspoken of the league's owners regarding the NBA's participation in the Olympics and all international competition during the NBA's offseason, Cuban said in April that he believed the topic of NBA players' availability was a dead issue, saying, "The commissioner's office won't open it up to discussion. They'll take calls about it but won't put it up for a vote. Hopefully, I can get him to move it to a vote at some point."
Silver made it clear Wednesday that Cuban's voice is resonating.
"And there's a recognition, certainly Mark Cuban, other owners have raised repeatedly the issue of our players playing in essence year-round when you add the Olympics to our newly renamed world championship of basketball to our World Cup of Basketball," Silver said. "So when you have the Olympics, the World Cup of Basketball, we are taking a very close look at whether it makes sense from an NBA standpoint and a global basketball standpoint for the top players to be playing at that level on a year-round basis, and somewhere (every) summer.
"So what we have told FIBA and what David has announced several times is that we are all in through the London Olympics, and then post-London Olympics we want to step back together with USA Basketball, led by Jerry Colangelo and Patrick Baumann in FIBA ... we need to take a long-term view of what makes sense both for the NBA and for the game."
Cuban detests that he and the other NBA owners must relinquish handsomely paid players to their national teams without any recourse if a player is injured during international competition. He has also argued that players and their teams should reap some financial gain, as well as railing against what he deems the corporate greed of FIBA, basketball's world governing body, the United States Olympic Committee and the International Olympic Committee.
"I think it's the biggest mistake the NBA makes," Cuban said in April of allowing NBA stars to compete in international competition. "If you look up stupid in the dictionary you see a picture of the USA Dream Team playing for free for corporate America so the U.S. Olympic Committee can make billions of dollars. So if you come up with something that you own that you can give to me for free so I can make billions of dollars, I want it."
Wednesday's announcement suggests Stern is growing increasingly wary of the toll year-round competition takes on the players' physical health as well as the quality and integrity of the NBA season. Stern and Silver said they still want NBA veterans to be eligible for the world championships staged every four years.
Cuban disagrees unless, he said Wednesday, fundamental changes are made to the structure of the world championship.
"(I'd be) more thrilled if the NBA starts its own world championship," Cuban said. "This way the revenues from the tourney could be shared with players. When the revenues go to FIBA, they get next to nothing. The teams get absolutely nothing."
One step at a time.
Since the NBA purchased the New Orleans Hornets, final responsibility for significant management decisions lies with the Commissioner's Office in consultation with team chairman Jac Sperling. All decisions are made on the basis of what is in the best interests of the Hornets. In the case of the trade proposal that was made to the Hornets for Chris Paul, we decided, free from the influence of other NBA owners, that the team was better served with Chris in a Hornets uniform than by the outcome of the terms of that trade.
Earlier in the day, Mavs owner Mark Cuban defended the league's stance on the "Ben and Skin Show" on 103.3 FM ESPN.
On behalf of the entire NBA family, I want to thank you for your patience and support over the past several months. The new collective bargaining agreement is designed to provide more competitive balance for our league, reward strong performances by our players, and strengthen our game by improving its economics. We believe this agreement will benefit our teams, players, and most importantly, fans by making the NBA stronger.
In the days and weeks ahead, all of us hope you will enjoy the run-up to the start of the season: free agency, training camp, and preseason games. Each NBA team will be hosting special events for fans, so be sure to check your favorite team's website, Facebook page, or Twitter feed for details. This season we look forward to bringing you more of everything you love about NBA basketball: incredible competition, tremendous excitement, and unending hard work and dedication by the world's best athletes.
Thank you for being an NBA fan. I hope you enjoy the season, which promises to be a most exciting one.Sincerely,David J. SternNBA Commissioner
The labor fight will now head to the court system as the union disbands. NBA commissioner David Stern said the league is headed into a nuclear winter as the 2011-12 season is in peril.
Terry took a few minutes after the press conference to discuss the situation as much as he could.
"I hate where it's gone right now. It sucks for us because of what we accomplished this last season," Terry said, meaning his 2010-11 NBA champion Mavs teammates. "It sucks for our fans and everyone that works at the arena. And it sucks for me because I want to be playing."
Terry, who stands to lose $11.7 million on the final year of his contract in Dallas, is no longer at liberty to comment on the proceedings now that the standoff is headed for the courts. Terry has been firm in his stance that the players would be ready to walk away from the deal if they did not find it acceptable. And, despite his comment that he hates where this has gone, he firmly stands behind the players' decision.
"Stand strong, stand together," Terry said.
A large contingent of NBA players attended the NBPA meeting Monday morning to deliberate the deal the owners delivered to the union late Thursday night and to show a measure of strength. Those players, including Terry, gathered around Hunter and Fisher as the union's leadership duo dropped the bomb at a press conference around 1 p.m. Central time.
Terry, who has been consistent in his desire to see a deal get done so the Mavs could get on with their title defense, has also been consistent in standing behind union leaders as one of 30 player reps.
"We hear a lot about the players are greedy. It's not that," Terry said Saturday night while taking part in Josh Howard's charity basketball game in Dallas. "The players just want to go out and play the game they love under fair terms."
Now, the process heads into uncharted waters. As Stern said, the season is in serious jeopardy. Stern knows it. The players know it.
Terry, whose children attend the same private school as Mavs owner Mark Cuban's and coach Rick Carlisle's, returns home to Dallas in the morning without a deal and still unable to speak to the Mavs' brass when he picks up the kids or attends their soccer games.
Most of all, he's completely uncertain of where this chaos goes next.
"We'll see what happens," Terry said.
That means nine more games can be crossed off the Mavericks’ schedule, increasing the total to 16.
They had already lost marquee matchups against the Bulls, Spurs and Thunder in the first batch of canceled games. A Nov. 28 visit from first-round foe Portland to the American Airlines Center is the highest-profile Mavs game to get wiped out with this announcement.
A look at the Mavs games canceled Friday:
Nov. 16, at Grizzlies
Nov. 18, vs. Kings
Nov. 19, at Hawks
Nov. 22, vs. 76ers
Nov. 23, at Rockets
Nov. 25, at Denver
Nov. 26, vs. Cavaliers
Nov. 28, vs. Trail Blazers
Nov. 30, vs. Suns
The season will be reduced to a maximum of 66 games if none of these games are re-scheduled, which would put historic 50-win streaks by the Mavs and Spurs in serious jeopardy.
The Mavs have 11 consecutive 50-win seasons. The Spurs have 13, dating to the last lockout-shortened season. Magic Johnson’s Lakers, who won at least 50 games 12 straight seasons, are the only other team with a streak of more than 10 such campaigns.
That's the day when players and coaches greet the media for the first time since the end of the previous season. They mill around the AAC practice court granting interviews and taking pictures. It's also when they pose for photos for team promotional initiatives and even some national stuff that you'll see on broadcasts throughout the season.
Basically, everyone's happy to be there because it means training camp opens the next day and it's back to basketball.
This day would have been one last chance to revel in what they accomplished that June night in Miami when Dirk Nowitzki ran off the court because winning the title was just too much emotion for him to handle at that moment.
This day ain't happening.
Nowitzki remains in Germany. Jason Kidd is probably on an extended honeymoon with his bride on some tropical island. Shawn Marion is likely jet-setting. Caron Butler is getting ready to suit up for the first time for a star-laden exhibition game in Miami on Saturday night. Tyson Chandler continues to kick with his family in Southern California just waiting to find out which team he's going to play for next.
Such is life during the ongoing NBA lockout that is dangerously close to canceling regular-season games. Owners and players will be back at the negotiating table this week. Is there hope? Not sure. Last week saw multiple meetings that included Mavs owner Mark Cuban, a shouting match between Dwyane Wade and commissioner David Stern and then a marathon meeting of close to eight hours that reportedly ended with a wide gulf still separating the two sides.
What must be driving Cuban and Donnie Nelson nuts is simply the inability to do anything. They have six free agents sitting out there, including Chandler, Butler, J.J. Barea, DeShawn Stevenson and The Custodian, Brian Cardinal.
What would have been finalized in early July has dragged into October and nobody is really sure when it all will come to a head. Until a deal is made the defending champs can't go to work on re-signing their 7-foot-1 defensive anchor and emotional leader in Chandler. Will Butler return? Will Barea be a Mav or maybe a Laker?
The clock is ticking. No reason to go to the AAC today. The lights won't be on.
Now, if you've got $650 burning a hole in your pocket, sign up for two Mavs fantasy camps this week with coach Rick Carlisle and his staff. The lights will be on for that.
Yes, the Worm, now 50, will be best remembered for wearing a wedding dress and his decorative use of boas. The flamboyant power forward has promised a full fashion blowout tonight, accentuated by acrobats and allegedly a helicopter entrance, for his induction as part of the 2011 class of the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame (6 p.m., NBA TV).
Rodman, who graduated from Dallas' South Oak Cliff High School and played mostly anonymously at Southeastern Oklahoma State, first made a name for himself as a rebounding machine with the "Bad Boy" Detroit Pistons. Later, he won titles as a the maddening, tattooed, multi-pierced, temper-tantrum-throwing, ugly step-child playing with Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen.
At the time brand-spanking new Mavs owner Mark Cuban reached out to a 38-year-old Rodman for pure spectacle purposes, Dallas was actually just starting to play respectable basketball under coach and general manager Don Nelson after the dark decade of the 90s. Rodman had been out of the league for a year and well, the Dallas stint was certainly the media circus Cuban knew it would be. On the court it was pretty much epic failure. The Mavs had just gone on a 10-3 run and talk of possibly getting into the playoffs surfaced
Rodman played 12 games in a Dallas uniform. The team won four games. He scored 34 points, but showed he could still manhandle the boards, grabbing 171 rebounds.
The outspoken one was, too, with the Mavs -- a squad that included a second-year, baby-faced Dirk Nowitzki, a developmental Steve Nash, Michael Finley, Shawn Bradley, Robert Pack, Hubert Davis, Sean Rooks and Gary Trent. Twice Rodman was tossed from games and both instances he challenged NBA commissioner David Stern, once to a boxing match -- naked.
"I wish me and David Stern could put some damn gloves on and go in the ring," Rodman said. "We'll see who comes out the winner. I've been a marked man for years. That's the first person they're going to look for - Dennis Rodman."
Rodman was also one of the first to criticize the club's young, billionaire owner for being too chummy with players and intruding on the players' space.
"He doesn't need to be hanging around the players like he's a coach or something," Rodman said. "That's like [Dallas Cowboys owner] Jerry Jones and it's dumb. That's why the Cowboys went down. He needs to be the owner, step back and put people in who can get this team in the right direction."
Rodman said that on March 7 and he was released on March 8, ending his colorful NBA career with averages of 7.3 points and 13.1 rebounds a game.
At the time, Cuban said Rodman's comments about him -- and that one wasn't the only one -- had nothing to do with releasing him. Cuban said the team just didn't get the wins he thought they would with one of the all-time great rebounders, defenders and characters on the squad.
Maybe so, but Cuban -- who, remember, had Rodman shack up at his guest house when he arrived in town -- also declined two requests this week to reminisce about Rodman's month-long carnival in Big D.
It is a bit surprising that the normally cautious Carlisle would even grant an interview under such tense and trying times, but he did serve three seasons as an assistant coach with the Trail Blazers and he has a history with Canzano.
So the interview gets started and Canzano acknowledges that Carlisle can't talk about the lockout, so he asks the coach what can they talk about.
"We can talk about the women's [World Cup] soccer team," Carlisle says.
Canzano follows up with, "What do you think about women's soccer?"
Carlisle, as dry as ever, says, "I like it." Then he adds, "They're a kick-ass bunch of chicks; it's fun to watch."
The interview then touches on expected topics like, "Did you sense non-Mavs fans were pulling for you guys against the Heat?"
Carlisle said he did and that he felt fans were rooting for Dirk Nowitzki and Jason Kidd with Carlisle calling them "great, great players, two all-time great players that didn't have the ring."
Carlisle was later asked what the Blazers can do to become a better team. Carlisle naturally said it's not his place to tell coach Nate McMillan or Blazers management how to run their club, and then in the natural flow of the conversation, Carlisle went here:
"[LaMarcus] Aldridge took a quantum leap this year. I voted for him for All-Stars; I have no idea how he didn't make the All-Star team, and he's a great player."
Carlisle also mentioned Blazers guards Brandon Roy and Wesley Matthews, and how the draft-night trade with Portland to acquire Rudy Fernandez was a good move for the Mavs. Carlisle said he liked getting a veteran player instead of a rookie.
The interview continues with neither party thinking gag-order violation flags were being thrown in New York. And so the conversation meandered on and at about 11 minutes in, as Carlisle is talking about how changes to NBA rules over the last decade have enhanced the game, he finishes a rambling thought by suddenly detouring to, "John, I'm sorry, I've got to run. I've got something I've got to do here."
And that was that.
Carlisle's abrupt exit spawned a new conversation about why he bailed so quickly. Was NBA Big Brother listening?
Soon after, Canzano reports that he received a text message from "an NBA executive who is listening to the show" and said, "You better believe that Carlisle got a call immediately from somebody at the NBA office or the Dallas Mavericks."
Could commissioner Stern really drop the piggy bank on Carlisle and the Mavs over comments that had nothing to do with the lockout and, in fact, actually kept the game in the forefront? If a fine of any size is coming, shame on the NBA.
An NBA spokesman essentially had no comment Thursday night, saying it is impossible to comment every time a coach or team exec may or may not say or do something. Just Wednesday night, Mavs owner Mark Cuban had special permission from Stern to attend the ESPYs in Los Angeles with half his team. It's not known if Cuban's praise of his players on national television was frowned upon.
"If [Carlisle] gets fined a million dollars for that," Canzano told his listening audience, "I know that we're not going to be able to raise enough money to pay for that fine, but we can get people like in Albany and Salem and everywhere else to come up and help him with the fine. Stupidest thing ever."
About 20 minutes after Carlisle hung up, Canzano caught up with him via text message. Canzano said Carlisle told him that somebody reminded him he's not supposed to talk about current players. Carlisle also said he's not in trouble.
For the love of free speech -- nah, for the love of sanity -- let's hope so.
Stern was asked for his reaction to Cuban's locked lips, the same ones that have been responsible for millions of dollars in fines, including $250,000 after Game 5 of the 2006 NBA Finals.
"It's too delicious, but I'll pass," Stern said. "I just think that he's trying to be as supportive as he can of his team, and he's doing a heck of a job in terms of the talent that they've gotten, the coach he's put there, and I think he's enjoying it and spending a lot of time supporting his team. And I think that's terrific."
J0hnson, a two-star General recently retired from active duty as Deputy Commanding General of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers -- the second highest ranking engineer in the Army -- after completing 32 years of military service as a combat engineer.
Johnson, a two-star General who retired from active duty as Deputy Commanding General of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers after 32 years of military service, is finishing his third year as senior vice president, referee operations. NBA Commissioner David Stern created the position and hired Johnson in July 2008 to oversee all aspects of the NBA’s officiating program, including recruiting, training and development, scheduling, data management and analysis, and work rules enforcement.
One aspect of Johnson's regime has been to introduce a new, younger crop of refs into the league. Cuban said he likes what he's seen.
"No question. Particularly with the younger refs," Cuban said prior to Tuesday's Game 2 pitting the Mavs and the Portland Trail Blazers. "The younger refs coming into the league right now are much, much better prepared and are more trained than five or six years ago or when I came into the league."
We assume Cuban is really pleased with the situation and not just saying that to say out of trouble with the General.
Love will replace the injured Yao Ming to fill out the Western Conference's 12-man roster for the 2011 All-Star game in Los Angeles.
Reserves were announced Thursday night and Love, Chandler, LaMarcus Aldridge and Steve Nash were among those deserving, but left off the team.
Following the announcement of the reserves, Love received a huge outpouring of support, which might or might not have influenced not only David Stern's decision to pick Love, but the speed in which he did so.
While Yao was the fans' choice to start at center, Love's appointment to the team does not put him in the starting lineup. Head coach Gregg Popovich will make that call. Just guessing, but Popovich is not the kind of guy that will just stick reserve Tim Duncan in as the starter because it's his guy. Popovich is more likely to give that spot to Pau Gasol in front of the home-town crowd.
Dirk Nowitzki, picked to his 10th consecutive All-Star team Thursday, will be the lone representative for the Dallas Mavericks.
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Play Podcast Dallas Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett at Mavericks media day to discuss his expectations for the upcoming season.
Play Podcast Mark Cuban joins Galloway and Company to discuss the Mavericks' new GM Gersson Rosas and much more.
Play Podcast Fitzsimmons and Durrett discuss Mark Cuban's comments from Las Vegas about the Mavericks' offseason, how he sees the team without Dwight Howard and more.
Play Podcast Marc Stein joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why the Mavericks didn't want to match Cleveland's offer to Andrew Bynum, what's next for the Mavs and the possibility of Dirk Nowitzki ending his career elsewhere.
Play Podcast Jeff Platt fires quick-hitters at Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon in the weekly sports standoff about Andrew Bynum, the Mavs' current backcourt, a potential Nelson Cruz suspension and more.
Play Podcast ESPN Los Angeles' Ramona Shelburne joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why she thinks Andrew Bynum got a bad rap in Los Angeles and how he would fit in with the Mavericks.
Play Podcast Buy, sell or hold? If Dwight Howard goes to another team, what are the Mavs' options? The guys take a look at a list of potential fallback options.
Play Podcast ESPN's Marc Stein joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to discuss the latest news on the Mavericks' meeting with Dwight Howard.