This past Sunday, Mark Cuban posted a 3,000-word entry to the official Mark Cuban Weblog, Blog Maverick, in which he explained the team’s recent transactions and outlined the organization’s plan moving forward. Given his status as far and away the most entertaining owner in sports, the post creates a dilemma: You want to hear what he has to say, but at the same time, don’t want to read something that requires what was once considered a normal human attention span. Fortunately, RM Sports has you covered. Below are the post’s most interesting tidbits, complete with analysis.
On The Dwight Pursuit:
“[Dwight] is a smart guy…He is also a very, very good listener…And he had the best response to an opening question that I have ever heard…’I want to be Epic.'”
Frankly, that sounds like a terrible answer. But then again, Mark Cuban enjoys fishing trips with Bobby Flay, so it makes sense that he’d respond to it. The Cubes didn’t have too much to say on this matter, as it seemed like Dwight’s decision was based solely on going to the place with the best, youngest, complimentary-est talent. What was noteworthy was the inclusion of the team’s Dwight recruitment video, a three minute cartoon that reads like a Japanese-English translation of the Dragonball Z theme song: “DNA is just the starting mechanism…this one is defined by effort.” Cuban made sure to note that the video was merely a component of the presentation and by no means the centerpiece, but still, yeesh.
On The State Of The NBA:
“The popular path to build a team is to put together a group of young players that you hope will develop…While it may be popular, I think the quantity of teams taking the same approach makes it more difficult to build a team in this manner.”
This was the most insightful aspect of the post, and demonstrated that if nothing else, Mark Cuban lives up to his team’s moniker. His point is that while most struggling franchises take the conventional Thunder road and tank until they can draft a Durant, Westbrook and Harden, the approach is a risky proposition. The draft is anything but a sure thing, and with many teams doubling their efforts on scouting and statistical analysis to reduce the crapshoot to a science, it becomes harder and harder to pick a future superstar. It is Cuban’s hope that by refusing to blow up the team and maintaining a talented, cohesive veteran core, the Mavericks will be in position to take advantage of the teams that inevitably enter fire sale mode. This of course segues perfectly into our next bullet…
On The Mavs Current Roster:
“I think we can be a good team. How good? I don’t make predictions… We have some players that will be far better on our team than they were on previous teams…[we can] add new players either via cap room or through trade that get us back in to the Finals.”
To answer Mark’s “How good?” question, the Mavs are a seventh seed at best, so… not very. Monta Ellis, Dalmbert, and Calderon are all above average players at their position, but legitimate number two options they are not. Of course, Cuban knows this, and is hoping to land that mystery player by exploiting other team’s previously discussed dump and draft strategy. I agree that he’s brought enough pieces on board to make the team presentable, but barring some unforeseen blockbuster trade, I’m still not convinced that the Mavs can make their cap space matter. The fact is that they have never been able to land a marquee free agent, not even back in ’04 when Steve Nash was dying to come back. If they’re banking on luring Carmelo or Lebron to Dallas next summer, I wish them the best of luck.
While the post did little to convince me of the Maverick’s title chances, it did make it abundantly clear that ownership is doing everything in its power to return Dallas to the promised land. Cuban is clearly up on the current trends in the NBA, and his creative, against the grain approach could very well end up paying dividends down the road, if not this season. More importantly, Mark Cuban has once again demonstrated that he is the only owner in professional sports who truly understands how to take advantage of social media to interact with his fan base. You may not agree with him, but you can’t dispute his transparency. It’s no surprise that despite their 10th place finish, the Mavericks were second only to Chicago in attendance.