Mark Cuban: Still a fan of putting ads on NBA Jerseys

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I hate to tell you this, but it’s going to happen someday — there will be corporate advertising on NBA jerseys.

How soon may be decided when the Board of Governors (read: the owners) meet next month to discuss league business. Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has been pushing for the idea for a while and restated that to the Star-Telegram (hat tip to SLAM).

“I’ve been trying to tell [the NBA],” Cuban said. “If someone wants to give us $10 million, I’ll make it happen….

“If the amount’s enough, David (Stern) will jump up and down,” Cuban said. “He’s not going to do it for $200,000 from Power Balance, but if somebody offers us $25 million, it’s done. We just have to work out the split with all the teams so everybody gets the benefits.”

The first foray into this will not be some European soccer type move where the company name replaces the team name (something also done in the WNBA). More than likely it would be something like Adidas (who already makes the NBA jerseys) getting to place its logo prominently on the jerseys. Or maybe something like McDonald’s “golden arches” on all the uniforms up near the shoulder. Something that you notice but is more subtle as opposed to something garish.

How much that is worth, and are there companies willing to pay it, are the real questions. I know the idea offends some American sports fans, but that doesn’t matter. The day is coming, sooner or later.

Nets’ national anthem singer kneels to finish performance

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NEW YORK (AP)—  The national anthem singer at the Brooklyn Nets’ home opener took a knee at the end of her performance.

Justine Skye was nearing the completion of the song Friday night when she went to one knee for the finish. There were some cheers, but appeared to be more boos from the crowd at Barclays Center to see the Nets play the Orlando Magic.

NBA players have continued to stand during the playing of the anthems, as required by league rule.

Mavericks’ rookie guard Dennis Smith Jr. misses game with knee swelling

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DALLAS (AP) — Dallas Mavericks rookie point guard Dennis Smith Jr. missed Friday’s game against the Sacramento Kings with swelling in his left knee.

Smith, the ninth pick in the NBA draft out of North Carolina State, had 16 points and 10 assists in the Mavericks’ season-opening loss to the Atlanta Hawks.

Smith participated in the Mavericks’ shootaround on Friday morning and was a late scratch. It is not known if Smith will play Saturday for Dallas.

The Mavericks were also missing guard Devin Harris, who was granted leave of absence after his brother died on Thursday.

Watch Lonzo Ball’s 29 point, 11 rebound, 9 assist game Friday night

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This was more of what fans expected from Lonzo Ball.

After a rough first game against the Clippers — with Patrick Beverley in his face all night — Ball found plenty of room to operate against the soft defense of the Phoenix Suns. With room to operate Ball had 29 points, 11 rebounds, and nine assists — just one assist short of a triple-double. He helped the Lakers pull away to a lead in the third then hold on for a 132-130 win over the Suns.

Ball wasn’t terribly efficient, 12-of-27 shooting, but he was 4-of-9 from three, he played with great pace, he was decisive, and was finding guys with his passes. It was a step forward, even if it was against a sad defense (Eric Bledsoe can be a good defender, but he has seemed disinterested in recent years).

Ball and the Lakers are going to be up and down this season, the goal is for there to be more ups near the end of the season.

LeBron James rejects Giannis Antetokounmpo at the rim

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Through the first couple games of the season, Giannis Antetokounmpo has put up impressive numbers — he dropped 34 points, 8 rebounds, and 8 assists on the Cavaliers Friday night.

But the Cavaliers still have LeBron James.

He had 24 points and 8 assists, leading Cleveland to the win.

LeBron also reminded the Greek Freak just how good a rim protector he is. Few people can slow Antetokounmpo on the drive, but LeBron is one of them.

Is it too early to root for a Cavs vs. Bucks playoff series?