Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban condemned Donald Sterling’s racist comments but expressed deep skepticism about efforts to remove him from the league, calling it “a very very very slippery slope.” Cuban emphasized that Sterling’s remarks were “private thoughts [he had] at home.”
Cuban’s comments stand in contrast to Houston Rockets owner Leslie Alexander who was determined to force Sterling out of the NBA. If Sterling won’t voluntarily sell the team, Alexander told NBA Commissioner Adam Silver that the league should make every Clipper player a free agent.
Cuban meanwhile, said a distinction needed to be made between “what people say and think, as opposed to what they do.” It’s unclear if Cuban was aware of Sterling’s $2.7 million settlement with the Department of Justice, which he made to settle allegations he sytematically excluded African Americans and Latinos from apartment complexes he owned.
Cuban warned that if Sterling is kicked out for his views, other owners could be at risk: “If it’s about racism and we’re ready to kick people out of the league, OK? Then what about homophobia?… What about somebody who’s anti-semitic? What about a xenophobe?”
“In this country, people are allowed to be morons,” Cuban added.