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Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, appearing on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" on Thursday, was passionate in his stance on Major League Baseball and its attempt to suspend New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez due to the Biogenesis scandal.
"Horrible," Cuban replied to Leno's question about Rodriguez's suspension. "I think it's disgraceful what Major League Baseball is trying to do to him. Look, it's not that he doesn't deserve to be suspended. He does. They have policies in place: A first-time offender is 50 games, and a second time is 100. [Two hundred and eleven games], that's personal."
Rodriguez was suspended for 211 games on Monday as a result of the investigation. However, he's been allowed to play pending his appeal, which could take months.
This isn't Cuban's first interaction with the world of Major League Baseball. In 2008, Cuban submitted a bid of $1.3 billion to buy the Chicago Cubs. In 2009, he was not selected to participate in the final bidding process. One year later, he pursued the purchase of the Texas Rangers. After placing bids upward of $600 million, he once again didn't win the rights to own a professional baseball team.
"I've got to tell you, with my experiences with Major League Baseball -- and after all of this, there's no chance I'm getting to buy a team -- it's basically become Bud Selig's mafia," Cuban said. "He runs it the way he wants to run it. They don't want me to own a team. When I was trying the buy the Rangers, even after the Cubs, when I was trying to buy the Texas Rangers, it was an open option.
"Horrible. I think it's disgraceful what Major League Baseball is trying to do to him. Look, it's not that he doesn't deserve to be suspended. He does. They have policies in place: A first-time offender is 50 games, and a second time is 100. [Two hundred and eleven games], that's personal.” -- Mavericks owner Mark Cuban on MLB's treatment of Alex Rodriguez
"I sat in there with my good, hard-earned money trying to bid, and they did everything possible to keep me from buying the team. They had lawyers in there trying to change the rules; they had people trying to put up more money. It was horrible."
Whether it's Rodriguez or whoever, Cuban strongly and passionately believes there's one thing to watch out for with the commissioner.
"Obviously, Bud Selig does not like to be tested," Cuban said. "He does not want anybody to stand up to him."
Leno shifted the Rodriguez discussion to a hypothetical scenario where the Yankees infielder, baseball's highest-paid player, would resist fighting the charges and tell everyone that he cheated, admitting it was wrong and apologizing for his actions. The late night host said MLB could send a message to the rest of the league by dropping the hammer on the league's elite players.
"It shouldn't be that way," Cuban said. "That's one of the poor things about sports. How much money a player makes should have nothing to do with the way you treat them.
"The reality is the guy broke the rules. He basically admitted that he had broken the rules before. But to come out [with the suspension MLB is going for] and try to give him a lifetime ban, that's just wrong."
In another part of the discussion, the use of human growth hormone in sports came up. HGH testing has been a major issue in baseball, and it's starting to come into the world of basketball. In mid-July, outgoing NBA commissioner David Stern said the league is looking to institute HGH testing in time for next season.
"Being in sports, I try to pay attention to all of the technology and everything," Cuban said. "It's never been proven that HGH helps a baseball player or a basketball player. It's just been so tainted that players shouldn't take it that it's become banned for no good reason."
Professional leagues have struggled to institute HGH testing.
"You can go in a lot of different directions," Cuban said. "But I think this is more about Bud Selig trying to flex his muscles and say, 'If you don't kiss the ring, I'm going to take care of you and kick you out of Major League Baseball.' I think that's wrong."