Before the Clippers played the Dallas Mavericks on Thursday, Mark Cuban took some jabs at the team that lured back free-agent center DeAndre Jordan.
“Look, the Clippers are the Clippers,” Cuban told a small group of reporters standing next to the Mavericks’ bench before tipoff. “You can change the players, you can change the owner, but the Clippers are just who they have been for the last 30 years.”
Jordan had committed to play for the Mavericks in July before a Clippers contingent went to the center’s home in Houston and helped persuade him to renege on that deal.
After Jordan’s very public change of heart, Cuban complained that the center hadn’t even called him to let him know that he was backing out. They still haven’t spoken.
“Haven’t said a word to him,” Cuban said. “Haven’t heard a word from him. If it wasn’t going to happen right around then, there’s no reason for it to happen later.”
Cuban said he doesn’t harbor any resentment.
“I mean, I don’t hate the Clippers, that’s a strong word,” Cuban said. “I don’t hate anybody on the Clippers.... I just don’t give a ... about the Clippers.”
Over the summer, Clippers Coach Doc Rivers criticized Cuban for his public complaining about the Jordan saga. Cuban fired back at Rivers, saying that if he hadn’t re-signed Jordan, his career would have been over.
Before Thursday’s game, Cuban was asked if he stood by his comment on Rivers.
“Oh, absolutely,” Cuban said before softening his words a bit. “Maybe not over, over. That was a little bit of an exaggeration but let’s put it this way -- I’m sure his stomach was nervous.”
Cuban then implied that it was almost too bad that this drama wasn’t with a more historic franchise.
“It’s not as much fun as picking on San Antonio,” Cuban said. “It’s not as much fun as picking on the Rockets. They’re still the Clippers.”