Mark Cuban Stopped Playing the Anthem Before Mavs Games, So the NBA Reminded Him That It’s Required | Bleacher Nation

Social Navigation


Mark Cuban Stopped Playing the Anthem Before Mavs Games, So the NBA Reminded Him That It’s Required

Chicago Bulls

Yesterday, we learned that the Dallas Mavericks had stopped playing the national anthem before home games at the direction of team owner Mark Cuban. In so doing, the Mavericks became the first professional North American sports team to nix the tradition. Fittingly enough, because the decision was not publicized (and given the absence of fans in the arena), people hadn’t actually noticed its absence through 13 games at the American Airlines Center this season.

And it wasn’t until The Athletic reached out for comment yesterday that the decision came to light, and things came to a head:

Almost immediately in response, however, the NBA is pushing back, insisting that the anthem be played before all games at all arenas, per league policy:

Now that fans are heading back to games in limited doses, the league intends to enforce their policy of playing the anthem before games. They also have a policy requiring players to stand during the anthem, but have historically refused to enforce it, for what that’s worth.

Cuban may be one of just a few owners (in any sport, really) both willing and able to make this sort of controversial call (though he seems to have done it with thoughtful intentions), but the NBA wants it to be clear to all that rules are rules. And Cuban intends to comply:

Again, it seems as though Cuban, himself, enjoys the anthem and was just trying to leverage his unique position to make a statement for those less able. All 30 NBA teams will play the song and that’s that.



Author: Michael Cerami

Michael Cerami covers the Chicago Cubs, Bears, and Bulls at Bleacher Nation. You can find him on Twitter @Michael_Cerami