By staying with Jordan, the Clippers would presumably stave off any last-minute attempts of
"Everything is positive," one league executive said of the Clippers' pursuit of Jordan, adding the team expected him to re-sign with the Clippers.
Cuban late Wednesday told some Mavericks employees that Jordan is returning to the Clippers.
Jordan committed to signing a four-year, $80-million contact with Dallas on Friday, but any commitment is not binding until Jordan actually signs with a team.
The strange sequence was triggered by Jordan expressing second thoughts about signing with the Mavericks to Clippers Coach
The Clippers’ traveling party included Rivers, team owner Steve Ballmer and players Blake Griffin,
There are no formal NBA rules against players backing out of commitments, but it is widely discouraged because it disrupts plans made by teams throughout the league.
Dallas has been famously spurned during free agency before. Point guard Jason Kidd backed out of a commitment to re-sign wiith the Mavericks in 2013 to play for the
The Clippers had long made it clear that keeping Jordan, the All-NBA third team center and a member of the league’s first team defense, would be the focus of their free-agency plans. They appeared to have increased their odds of retaining him after trading for
Clippers players did not attend their team's first pitch meeting with Jordan, having made their desire for him to re-sign known individually. But they were using nearly all modes of transportation to reach Houston on Wednesday.
Things were just starting to get creative. Griffin, who was returning from a Hawaiian vacation, tweeted emojis of an airplane, a helicopter and a car. Paul joined the fun when he tweeted emojis of a banana and a boat, a reference to the banana boat he rode this week in the Bahamas. Clippers assistant coach
Dallas had initially impressed Jordan with its relentless pursuit as well as plans to make him a focal point of its offense. One league executive said the Clippers were not happy the Mavericks were granted a dinner with Jordan in addition to a formal pitch meeting once the free-agency process started last week.
But Jordan never commented publicly since making his initial pledge to play for the Mavericks even as Cuban drew a $25,000 fine from the NBA for saying he envisioned Jordan being “