David Stern Rumors
In the past decade or so, the NBA has had two prominent opportunities to address the issue of sexual harassment in its workplaces. Both times the league fumbled badly, so that when, this week, Sports Illustrated published a damning portrait of the culture of workplace harassment within the Mavericks office, there should have been little surprise. Both instances involve the Knicks and their handling of the lawsuit brought in 2007 against the team by former executive Anucha Browne Sanders. The league, under commissioner David Stern, offered no punishment of the Knicks or coach and team president Isiah Thomas at that time. The NBA ignored the issue again after Knicks owner James Dolan and Thomas spoke out on the subject in 2015 when the Knicks rehired Thomas to oversee the WNBA’s Liberty franchise. That happened under Adam Silver’s watch. As New York employment attorney Kevin Mintzer, one of Browne Sanders’ lawyers, sees it, the NBA is now reaping what it has sown.
“I am not surprised,” said Mintzer (who does not speak for Browne) of the Mavs’ situation. “As we’ve seen throughout industries, this is an issue that is still pervasive, everywhere. I am particularly not surprised that it is a problem in the NBA given the nonexistent reaction that the NBA had to Anucha’s case back in 2007 and 2008 when it happened, and a few years ago when Mr. Dolan and Mr. Thomas were on TV saying slanderous things about my client eight years after the fact.”
But the fact is, the NBA sent a message back in 2007 when the Browne Sanders lawsuit against the Knicks was originally filed and no punishment was doled out by Stern. That message: This is not our business, and we won’t hand out punishment for it. Silver backed up that message after the 2015 James Dolan- Isiah Thomas interviews on HBO. And here we are. “The message should be that these events — despite what you have allowed, what you have indulged, what you have turned your head away from in the past — OK, clearly it is not going to fly,” Mintzer said. “If you purport to be a progressive league and you purport to have values in which you care about injustice to people’s color and women, but you allow workplaces like this to fester and do nothing when something is shown to be seriously wrong, then no one will take you seriously. “The only time they’ll do something is when there is public pressure to do something. My expectation is Mr. Silver will get religion on this only when he feels he has to.”
After the Mavs won their lone championship in 2011, owner Mark Cuban invited Carter onto the stage to celebrate with the team. NBA commissioner David Stern eventually handed the championship trophy to Carter. “The entire Mavs family is heartbroken by the loss of Mr. Don Carter,” current Mavs Owner Mark Cuban said. “Along with his wife Mrs. Carter, they have been our guiding lights for the organization since its founding in 1980. “To say he will be missed does not do justice to just how important Mr. C has been to the Dallas Mavericks and the City of Dallas. Our condolences go out to Mrs. Carter and the entire Carter family.”
The man responsible for bringing NBA basketball to Dallas has passed away at 84 years old. Don Carter, the founding owner of the Dallas Mavericks, died Wednesday night at his home in Uptown Dallas. Carter was the man who hoisted the Larry O’Brien Trophy after the Mavericks won the 2011 NBA Finals, as owner Mark Cuban insisted league commissioner David Stern hand Carter the trophy — a moment many Mavs fans remember fondly. “He is Mr. Mavericks,” Cuban told the Star-Telegram in 2015. “There are no Mavericks without Mr. C and Mrs. [Linda] C. There’s nobody more important to this organization, and I would put him ahead of Dirk [Nowitzki]. Without him, we are not here.”
Carter helped convince the National Basketball Association that having a team in Dallas would be worthwhile. A long battle, a $12 million league entry fee, and $27 million for Reunion Arena, and on May 1st, 1980, the Dallas Mavericks were born. Carter was the primary owner of the franchise until 1996, when he sold a controlling stake to Ross Perot, Jr., and he maintained ownership of a small portion of the franchise for the remainder of his life. That initial $39 million turned into $125 million by the time he sold his controlling stake to Perot. Carter initially made his money in the ‘Home Interiors and Gifts’ retail business that his mother started.
Around the time Pitino arrived, a group of Louisville businessmen and politicians were making a concerted effort to land an NBA team. In part, this was a play for economic development. Louisville could see how pro football and hockey helped revitalize Nashville. But it also came just as much from a desire for respect. The city burghers even had a nonbinding agreement with the Charlotte Hornets, which wanted to relocate. The plan centered around building a downtown arena that the Hornets and the Cardinals would share. Jurich and Pitino had other ideas. They had no intention of sharing an arena with an NBA team—they didn’t even want to share the city with an NBA team. Louisville was theirs. David Stern, who was then commissioner of the NBA, recalls thinking, “If Rick Pitino doesn’t want us there, why are we going there?” The Hornets went to New Orleans instead.