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Bar worker: Woman jumped after photo with ‘gropey’ Mark Cuban


In 2011, a woman accused Mavericks owner Mark Cuban of putting his hand down the back of her pants and penetrating her vagina as they posed for pictures. Cuban denies the allegation. Police investigated and didn’t charge him. Employees at the bar where the incident occurred interviewed by police all said they didn’t see anything.

It seemed reasonable to ask: If Cuban suddenly penetrated the woman without her consent in a crowded bar where so much attention was on the celebrity, wouldn’t she have reacted in a way someone noticed?

Christopher White, who was working security at the bar that night, says he noticed.

Shane Dixon Kavanaugh of The Oregonian:

White said he was standing about 20 feet away from the woman and Cuban.

“She definitely jumped after he had put his arm around her,” White said.

The woman looked upset and began to raise her voice and point angrily at Cuban, White said. Security guards moved quickly to separate the woman and other club patrons from the celebrity, he said.

“She jumped away like she was not happy with him,” White, 33, said in an interview Wednesday with The Oregonian/OregonLive. “That’s when the energy in the room kind of exploded.”

“I didn’t have a camera on his hand,” said White, who held various positions at the Northwest Third Avenue club between 2010 and 2014. “But it sure looked like it was too low to be just on her back.”

Cuban would point his finger at women with whom he wanted to be photographed and beckoned them, White said. The way Cuban touched some of the women struck White as inappropriate because his hands moved well below the middle of their backs, he said.

“He was, like, really kind of gropey toward them,” White said. “It just wasn’t how you’d normally pose in a picture with someone.”

White noticed immediately the blustery billionaire seemed very drunk when he arrived. Cuban was sweating and his hair looked messy, the former employee said. He slurred his words and gestured wildly as he interacted with people.

“He was slinking around all over the place,” White said. “I believe we told him we couldn’t serve him any alcohol.”

Cuban was eventually asked to leave the bar, White said, which he said the NBA owner did not respond well to. White said Cuban swore at those around him before storming off.

“This former employee of the bar who is coming forward today, seven years later, says he was watching Mr. Cuban at the critical moment when the photographs were being taken and Mr. Cuban did not put his hand in the complainant’s pants,” said Jacob Houze, an attorney for Cuban, in a statement.

“This former employee’s claims about Mr. Cuban’s interactions with other patrons and employees are directly refuted by all the witnesses who were interviewed by the police. Once again, this did not happen.”

White said he was never interviewed by police, but later told a friend what he’d witnessed. The friend confirmed to The Oregonian/OregonLive that White had told him the same account.

White previously telling a friend about the incident would somewhat invalidate that he’s just coming forward now, as Cuban’s attorney portrays it. And just because some people didn’t see something doesn’t mean someone else didn’t see it or that it didn’t happen.

Still, tricky questions remain: What actually happened? What can be proven? What was criminal?

Kevin Love returns to Cavaliers lineup Monday vs. Bucks

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The last time Kevin Love suited up for the Cavaliers, it was still January and Isaiah Thomas, Dwyane Wade, and Jae Crowder were still on the team.

That is about to change tonight — Love will return from a fractured hand and play for the Cavaliers, but on a minutes restriction to start, interim coach Larry Drew confirmed.

Cleveland needs Love back. The Cavaliers went 11-9 without him in this stretch (and 6-7 since the All-Star break) with an offense that has still been top 10 in the NBA but a defense that is holding them back. The Cavaliers’ defense is just not on the same page right now, and the more time the regular rotations guys get to play together, the better they should be before the playoffs start.

As Love rounds into form, the Cavaliers have to figure out their rotations. Does Love start Love next to Larry Nance Jr., or does Nance come off the bench again? Probably the latter, but the Cavaliers will toy with the rotations (and do that more when Tristan Thompson returns).

Former NBA All-Star Steve Francis cited for public intoxication

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What happened to Steve Francis [after his playing days]? I was drinking heavily, is what happened. And that can be just as bad (as drug use). In the span of a few years I lost basketball, I lost my whole identity, and I lost my stepfather, who committed suicide.”
—Steve Francis, writing in the Players’ Tribune earlier this month, about his journey from selling crack to the NBA, and what happened after.

Addiction, once it’s got you, never goes away. The fight to stay sober/clean is a new one every day.

Steve Francis was cited for public intoxication in Burbank, Calif., after an incident at a hotel bar, according to TMZ (since confirmed by other reports).

Francis, 41, was arrested around 11:40 PM after police were called for a disturbance between two men at a hotel in Burbank.

Law enforcement sources tell us when cops arrived, Francis was intoxicated. He was arrested for being drunk in public.

Francis was transported to jail … before being given a citation and released around 7 AM Monday morning.

Francis denied in the Players’ Tribune article rumors he had a drug problem, but he owned up to drinking.

Lakers coach Luke Walton: I thought Pacers’ Paul George trade was ‘lopsided’ in favor of Thunder

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Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert said the Pacers “could have done better” than trading Paul George to the Thunder for Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis.

Gilbert would have company with egg on their face if more people shared their views on the deal when it happened.

Lakers coach Luke Walton – whose team plays Indiana tonight – joined the club with an admission.



Originally, I thought it was kind of a lopsided trade, but I’m man enough to admit that I was wrong. Indiana has, I think they’re probably the surprise team of the season so far. They’re playing unbelievable. They have that three seed. And both of those players they got in the trade, they’re playing some really, really good basketball. So, obviously, a good trade for both teams.

Me too, Luke. Me too.

George is basically who we thought he was. But Oladipo and Sabonis have taken major steps forward. Sabonis’ growth as a second-year player was more predictable. Oladipo’s breakthrough seemed far less likely – and has carried far larger ramifications.

Oladipo was fine in Oklahoma City and Orlando, but he got into the best shape of his life and developed his outside shooting, particularly off the dribble. He has become a true star, putting up big offensive numbers while remaining a plus defender.

All the credit goes to Oladipo for making it happen and Pacers president Kevin Pritchard for ensuring Indiana reaped the rewards. I bet even Pritchard is surprised by Oladipo’s level of play, but Pritchard bet on Oladipo. Pritchard gets credit for the outcome.

People like Walton and myself eat crow.

Rajon Rondo on Ray Allen’s book: ‘He just wants attention’

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Ray Allen wrote a book that spills a lot of dirt on Rajon Rondo – how Rondo told Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, Allen and other Celtics he carried them to the 2008 title, how Rondo clashed with Doc Rivers.

Rondo, via Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe:

“He just wants attention,” Rondo said. “I need actually some sales from [the book], only [publicity] it’s been getting is from my name. I need some percentage or something.”

“Obviously, that man is hurting,” Rondo said of Allen. “I don’t know if it’s financially, I don’t know if it’s mentally. He wants to stay relevant. I am who I am. I don’t try to be something I’m not. I can’t say the same for him. He’s looking for attention. I’m a better human being than that. I take accountability for my actions. Certain [stuff] happens in my life, I man up. But he has a whole other agenda.”

“He’s been retired for whatever years, and now he comes out with a book,” Rondo said of Allen. “People do that in that situation they need money. He should have hit me up and asked me for a loan or something. It’s no hard feelings.”

Obviously, Allen wants attention. He’s promoting a book.

But that doesn’t make the stories in the book inaccurate.

Allen and Rondo, now with the Pelicans, have feuded for a while. Neither is completely reliable about the other. Both are too colored by their dislike for each other.

I doubt Rondo knows about Allen’s financial situation. Rondo is just trying to dig at Allen, like Allen dug at Rondo in the book. Famous people write books for many reasons. Financial gain isn’t necessarily Allen’s primary motivation. Allen has a lot of time in retirement.

I’d rather hear Rondo address the book’s claims. He’s extremely forthright, even admitting he’s difficult to coach. He might corroborate the stories involving himself and Rivers. Telling Garnett, Pierce and Allen he led them to the championship? I’d like to know Rondo’s side of that story.