Cuban: "Moratorium Not To Blame For DeAndre Jordan"

Cuban: "Moratorium Not To Blame For DeAndre Jordan"

Tim MacMahon and Kevin Arnovitz ESPNDallas.com

After refusing to accept DeAndre Jordan's public apology for backing out of a verbal agreement to join the Mavericks, Dallas owner Mark Cuban said the free-agent moratorium period that enabled Jordan to change his mind wasn't to blame.

"I don't give a f---," Cuban said Saturday from the Las Vegas Summer League. "It isn't relevant to anything."

Jordan, who backed out of his commitment to Dallas to re-sign with the Los Angeles Clippers, apologized to Cuban, the Mavericks and the team's fans in a pair of tweets Friday night.

@deandrejordan6 I want to publicly apologize to one of the best owners in the world @MCuban, the @DallasMavs and their fans.

@deandrejordan6 I am humbled by @DallasMavs & @MCuban kindness and understanding. I am sorry to have a change of heart.


On Saturday, Cuban wrote on the social media messaging application Cyber Dust: "When is an apology not an apology? When you didn't write it yourself. Next."

After Jordan's tweets were posted Friday, Cuban told ESPN.com he still has not had any communication with Jordan since Tuesday night. Cuban said Jordan's mother, Kimberly, called him, but he declined to elaborate on that conversation.

On Saturday in Las Vegas, Cuban dismissed the idea that Jordan had committed a breach of etiquette.

"I pick my nose at the table. I don't give a f--- about etiquette," Cuban said. "It's not about etiquette. Look, guys, s--- happens, right? This is business. This is the real world. You move on. There's lots of guys that haven't played for the Mavericks that are in the NBA."

During the moratorium period, which begins July 1 and in which the NBA audits its finances to determine salary-cap figures, teams are permitted to negotiate with free agents. Those players can then commit to a team, but they're not officially allowed to sign a contract.

Jordan, after verbally agreeing to a four-year max deal with the Mavs during the moratorium period, made an about-face when he re-signed with the Clippers on Thursday morning shortly after midnight ET.

Following Jordan's decision, various parties around the league and in the media have broached the subject of shortening the moratorium period to avoid such situations. But Cuban insisted that the moratorium period wasn't consequential.

"There's nothing to talk about," he said. "Until you get him to sign on the line that is dotted, nothing happens."

Jordan departed for a 10-day cruise Thursday and is unlikely to hold a news conference until July 20.

Jordan reneging on the verbal commitment he made on July 3 left the Mavs scrambling to fill their void at center. They addressed that need Thursday by trading a future second-round pick to the Milwaukee Bucks for Zaza Pachulia, a 12-year veteran who averaged 8.3 points and 6.8 rebounds last season.

On Saturday, Cuban said that while Pachulia brings a set of skills to Dallas, the team still needs to address its presence inside.

"I think we need to get a center, obviously," Cuban said. "Zaza can play; don't get me wrong. The guy can shoot. He can rebound, but it would be nice to have somebody who can play above the rim, so we're looking at some of our options there."

Asked if he had any proposals for the NBA Competition Committee, which will meet Monday in Las Vegas to discuss any rule changes to the game, Cuban suggested the league should put a fourth referee on the floor.

"I think guys will have to just play basketball," Cuban said. "There will be a lot less fooling of refs, a lot less flopping. The game will be smoother, a lot less movement, less wear and tear on refs' [bodies] ... I think there's a lot of upside to it."

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