Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban says that when the idea was brought up to have former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo dress and enter an NBA game, it was shut down by NBA commissioner Adam Silver.
Romo attended a shootaround for the Mavericks on Tuesday and participated in pre-game activities before the team's final home game against the Denver Nuggets. The team honored Romo for his service to the Cowboys over a 14-year career. Romo retired last week and will be an analyst for CBS.
Cuban said Silver wasn't too receptive on the idea of Romo playing.
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“I told him what I was going to do and said, 'Fine me if you don't like it,” Cuban says. “It was not like he was going to play real minutes, you know? Yeah, it’s only been 18 years since he played, but go ahead and get out there and play against the best in the world.
“Anybody who thinks a layup line is disrespectful, hasn't watched an NBA game,” Cuban said. “We've got people shooting half-court shots at every break, we've got kids for ball boys … We're entertainment. And if they're so self-important they can't recognize that, it's on them. Not me.”
Ezekiel Elliott, Jason Witten and more than a dozen other former teammates showed up to support Romo, as well as Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett, offensive coordinator Scott Linehan and owner/general manager Jerry Jones.
“This is an honor I could never have dreamed of,” Romo said before the game. “It's a little embarrassing, but I tell you what I'm very lucky. Thank you, Dallas. I love you.”
The Mavericks (32–49) end their regular season on Wednesday against the Memphis Grizzlies.