Candid Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban is certain that the Golden State Warriors are now the villains of the NBA, and he likes it that way. Cuban believes that the new-look Warriors, who now boast of four legitimate All-Stars in their starting five, will be rooted against by “everybody.”
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Cuban’s opinion is in stark contrast to that of commissioner Adam Silver, who said previously in a news conference that the Warriors’ new “superteam” was not ideal from the league’s point of view. Former scoring champion and league MVP Kevin Durant recently joined the Warriors via free agency.
Cuban, in an interview with ESPN, said that the NBA will benefit from the transfer because of the interest it will bring, comparing it to LeBron James’s switch to the Miami Heat in 2010. He also warned against the assumption that the Warriors will easily win the championship, saying that only “one injury” can possibly ruin the whole thing. He also noted that it has always been tough for “superteams to stay super.”
The Mavericks were actually aided by Durant’s decision when they acquired two former Golden State starters in Harrison Barnes and Andrew Bogut. Barnes was a priority target of the Mavs during the free agency period, receiving an offer of $94 million for four years. “It sure helped,” Cuban admitted.
Silver’s concern could have some valid backers in the form of the other team owners. Mitch Lawrence of Forbes wrote that the next NBA lockout could very well happen next year. The collective bargaining agreement (CBA) between the league and NBA Players Association was signed in 2011, but with an opt-out clause in December of this year. With this recent event of Durant signing with Golden State, the expectations are the owners will be the ones to opt out, paving the way for new talks on a new collective bargaining agreement. If no agreement is reached, a lockout is most likely to happen. The CBA is set to expire after the 2020-21 season.
Both Cuban and Silver agreed on one thing – that there were no rules broken when Durant switched teams.