On paper it’s not nearly the sexy matchup it once was. The Los Angeles Lakers and the Dallas Mavericks have a rivalry going back to the late 80s that has featured plenty of memorable contests in the regular and postseason. However this year with both teams below .500 and out of the playoff picture the games just don’t have the same weight as years previous.
Thankfully for ABC who will nationally televise today’s Lakers-Mavs clash, the interest for the game has been peaked by Mark Cuban’s comments regarding Kobe Bryant and what the Lakers should do with his contract. Seems Cuban thinks Bryant’s $30-million salary is ripe for amnesty next season.
The Lakers took offense to his words and the league will likely have something to say too.
But what’s bad for an NBA owner to say is good for the viewing audience that ABC is looking to attract on a Sunday morning.
Cuban’s outspoken nature as landed him in hot water far too often but his success as an owner is undeniable and his many misguided rants have upped the ante for an otherwise meaningless game in the grand scheme of things. Not all press is good press but what’s good for ratings is great for the NBA. So just consider Cuban and his comments a necessary evil from a marketing standpoint.