Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban should have stayed quiet about the team no longer playing the national anthem before games. The NBA commented on that decision Tuesday, saying it expects all teams to follow league policy and continue playing the national anthem before games.
NBA chief communications officer Mike Bass cited fans returning to arenas as a reason to continue playing the national anthem.
NBA Chief Communications Officer Mike Bass issued statement today concerning league’s rule on playing national anthem: “With NBA teams now in process of welcoming fans back into their arenas, all teams will play the national anthem in keeping with longstanding league policy.”
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) February 10, 2021
The Mavericks have not played the national anthem before home games the entire season. The team has hosted 13 home games, but the absence of the anthem wasn't noticed until Monday, the first game in which limited fans were allowed at American Airlines Center in Dallas. Cuban confirmed to The Athletic that it was his decision to not play the national anthem before games.
Will Mark Cuban abide by the NBA's national anthem rule?
Cuban may be one of the most vocal and opinionated owners, but he's willing to cave on this issue. Cuban said the Mavericks will abide by the league's national anthem policy moving forward.
Mark Cuban and the Dallas Mavericks will resume playing the Anthem tonight vs. Atlanta. Statement from Cuban, in part: “The hope is that those who feel passionate about the anthem being played will be just as passionate in listening to those who do not feel it represents them.” pic.twitter.com/XnXpd8ThlW
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) February 10, 2021
Cuban explained that he respects the anthem and has always stood with his hand over his heart while it was being played. He said he hopes people who "feel passionate about the anthem being played will be just as passionate in listening to those who do not feel it represents them."
Cuban's statement will be put to the test immediately. The Mavericks host the Atlanta Hawks on Wednesday at the American Airlines Center in Dallas.
Unless Cuban has a last minute change of heart, the Mavericks are expected to play the national anthem prior to Wednesday's contest.
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