No More National Anthem at Dallas Mavericks Home Games, Mark Cuban Says

The national anthem will not be played prior to Dallas Mavericks home games for the foreseeable future, team owner Mark Cuban confirmed to The Athletic.

The site also reported that this was Cuban’s decision.

None of the preseason or regular season games played at American Airlines Center have featured the Star-Spangled Banner. All but one of those games have been played without fans. The first home game with limited attendance was Monday night’s contest between the Mavericks and the Minnesota Timberwolves, a game the Mavericks won 127-122.

Multiple team employees told The Athletic that they only noticed the removal of the anthem on their own, saying it was never announced or explained internally. There is also no reason to believe that any elaboration will be forthcoming. Both Cuban and the Mavericks organization declined The Athletic’s requests for comment or explanation.

Don’t be surprised if more teams—and not just NBA ones—follow Cuban’s lead. This could become a trend.

Regardless of anthem or no anthem, the NBA has become unwatchable over the past few years. Ratings have tanked as they’ve amplified their pro-BLM social justice advocacy. Empty arenas and socially distanced benches have made for a depressing sight. Analytics have turned the on-court product into nothing but two-foot gimmes or 30-foot threes.

As much as I enjoyed The Last Dance series and still like sports in general, I don’t think I’d care if I went through the rest of my life without ever seeing another NBA game.