NBA Responds to Mark Cuban, Makes National Anthem Mandatory

Feb 15, 2020; Chicago, Illinois, USA; NBA commissioner Adam Silver speaks at a press conference during NBA All Star Saturday Night at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

The NBA finds itself in a rift with Mark Cuban. Just a day after the Dallas Mavericks owner said that the national anthem wouldn’t play at home games, the NBA put out an official statement contradicting his claim.

“All teams will play the national anthem.”

Those are the simple words stated by the NBA, seemingly as a warning to Cuban and the Mavericks. This action comes as a surprise considering the NBA’s heavy support for the ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement while in the bubble.

It makes sense to assume that the support for social issues would continue into this season, but today’s statement shows otherwise. Clearly, Adam Silver seems to disagree with Cuban’s thoughts on the anthem.

Even more puzzling is Silver’s past leniency when enforcing the “kneeling” rule during the anthem. Amidst the social strife this past summer, Silver did nothing in response to players kneeling. The commissioner even put out the following statement in support of kneeling.

“Under these unique circumstances, [I] will not enforce our long-standing rule requiring standing during the playing of our national anthem.”

Cuban retracted his previous statement, and the anthem played before Wednesday’s home game against the Hawks.

“There was never any final decision that was made that we would not play the anthem.”

Wednesday marked the first time the anthem sounded at a Mavericks home game this season.

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