Cuban upset with White House trip scheduling
It didn’t come without a little drama, but in the end the Dallas Mavericks will visit President Barack Obama at the White House next Monday.
But Mavs owner Mark Cuban wasn’t happy about the process. Cuban said Monday that the NBA messed up by not scheduling Dallas to play in Washington D.C. Instead, Cuban organized the visit before a two-game trip to Detroit and Boston which begins Jan. 10.
“It doesn’t change the fact that they didn’t (schedule) a game in DC for us,” the Mavericks owner wrote Tuesday in an email to The Associated Press. “Given the compressed schedule it should have been more of a priority because they knew better than any of us how few days off we would have to do something.”
The NBA defended itself by saying that even if a game had been scheduled against the Wizards, it would not have guaranteed that Obama would’ve been available for a visit on that date.
“Our jurisdiction doesn’t extend to scheduling the president, and scheduling the Mavericks against the Wizards would have been no guarantee that the president would be in town and available,” league spokesman Mike Bass told the AP.
Bass added that the league learned that Obama would be available Jan. 9 and began working with the Mavericks to accommodate that availability and the Mavericks’ schedule.
“Fortunately, we were able to make it work,” Bass said.
Even if the two sides don’t agree on how the trip was finalized, the players seem happy for the opportunity.
“It’ll be a fun experience,” Mavericks guard Jason Terry told The Dallas Morning News, “I’ve been there before, but not for this president, the first black president. It’s a great experience when you get the honor and privilege to go to the White House. It’s a tribute to what we were able to accomplish. It’s definitely going to be fun.”