Mark Cuban stunned by NBA season postponement, will support Mavericks employees who can't work

Sporting News

Mark Cuban was just as shocked about the postponement of the 2019-20 NBA season as we all were.

The Mavericks owner attended his team's 113-97 win over the Nuggets on Wednesday night, which became the last NBA game of the evening when the Pelicans-Kings game in Sacramento was canceled due to coronavirus concerns. ESPN's broadcast of the Mavs game captured the moment Cuban learned the season had been postponed after Jazz center Rudy Gobert tested positive for the virus.

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"This is crazy. This can't be true," Cuban told ESPN's Tom Rinaldi when asked about his reaction. "I mean, it's not within the realm of possibility. It seemed more like out of a movie than reality."

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Cuban noted the Mavs' plan regarding coronavirus was to defer to the NBA, which on Wednesday night took swift action once Gobert tested positive for coronavirus. The Jazz's game against the Thunder in Oklahoma City was immediately postponed along with the rest of the league's season.

"I trust (NBA commissioner) Adam (Silver)," Cuban added. "It's really not about basketball or money. Literally if this thing is just exploding to the point where all of a sudden players and others have had it. You think about your family. You really wanna make sure you're doing this the right way 'cause now it's much more personal. Just, stunning isn't the right word. Just crazy."

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Unprompted, Cuban during his interview with Rinaldi mentioned his team would construct a payment plan for the employees who work for the Mavs on an hourly basis.

Understandably unable to provide specific details, he expanded on that plan after the game.

Gobert, 27, is expected to recover. The NBA's concern is more about the possibility of the virus infecting those with whom he has come in contact over the last week or so. A total of 34 different players have shared floor with Gobert since Friday.

The length of the NBA season suspension is indefinite. A source told Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press that the league expects to be shut down for at least two weeks, but that timeframe is "very fluid."

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