Mark Cuban has a long history with NBA officials, and almost none of it good. But the Dallas Mavericks owner didn’t hesitate the fan the flames of an old feud by blasting referee Ken Mauer for his performance in Brooklyn earlier this week.
Not only did Mauer eject Doc Rivers late in the game, sending the Clippers coach into an angry ball of rage, but he stood and stared at this obvious pair of violations eariler in the game (that’s travelling and double dribble, for anyone keeping track) and didn’t blow his whistle.
Just look at this!
On Wednesday, Cuban ranted that the NBA needs to make an example out of Mauer.
“Suspend him, demote him, make him ref a game in the D-League,” Cuban said Wednesday, according to ESPN’s Tim MacMahon.
“That call? At the beginning of the game? Right in front of him?” Cuban continued. “That wasn’t an error in judgment.
“Refs are going to miss things because there’s other things going on, but there was nothing else going on. It was the first or second play of the game, and he was standing right there. … This wasn’t just a missed call. This was something else.”
Cuban went to say that he’s never had an issue with Mauer specifically, but that the quality of officiating is important to the entire league. Owners, coaches, players, and fans all want to have confidence that the calls are unbiased and fair, which can sometimes be hard to swallow when your favorite team is on the wrong end of a bad decision.
“The quality of officiating matters in this game, you know?” Cuban said. “Standings are impacted. Mistakes happen. Lots of calls are hard, but not all of them. Some of them are just lack of focus and attention, and that’s the one thing you should be able to avoid at all times, particularly from such an experienced ref.”
Cuba may get fined for criticizing an official, but he won’t care. He’s already been dinged for over $1.5 million in fines since buying the Mavericks, and matches those fines with donations to charities.