The weirdest story in basketball right now is Mark Cuban‘s decision to ban a pair of ESPN reporters, Marc Stein and Tim MacMahon, from covering the team. Cuban discussed the decision on Tuesday, citing the “reduction in number of games [covered] this year” for stripping the two reporters of their credentials, which is an unusual reason to keep someone from covering your team.
Stein and MacMahon decided to release a joint statement on Cuban’s decision, saying that they find this decision “difficult to understand.”
We want to thank our colleagues throughout the media and the NBA, fellow Professional Basketball Writers Association members and, most of all, ESPN readers and viewers who have offered such tremendous support over the past few days.
The circumstances that led the Mavericks to deny us entry to their home games remain very difficult to understand, given that the NBA has always been one of the most media-friendly leagues in the world. Yet we’re hopeful that a resolution is near.
Until then, nothing about the objective and aggressive manner in which we cover the league and its teams will change.
This decision from Cuban still doesn’t make much sense, but it’s good to see that both Stein and MacMahon are optimistic that they’ll get their credentials back sometime soon. Here’s to hoping they’re back on the Mavs beat sooner rather than later.