Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, a day after excoriating the International Olympic Committee regarding the role of NBA players in international events, told ESPNDallas.com that he couldn’t prevent newly signed forward Chandler Parsons from participating in Team USA tryouts.
“Like Dirk Nowitzki, I can’t stop him,” Cuban said. “It’s his decision.”
Parsons was in Las Vegas attempting to make the team USA Basketball is assembling to compete in the FIBA World Cup at the end of this month.
Cuban said he didn’t tell Parsons he was against his players participating in international events after signing the restricted free agent to a three-year, $46 million offer sheet that the Houston Rockets opted not to match.
The controversial owner said he didn’t think it was necessary to tell Parsons how he felt, adding that he’s not allowed to pressure players not to participate.
“He knows how I feel,” Cuban said.
Parsons played 25 minutes in Friday night’s USA Basketball Showcase in Las Vegas, scoring five points and grabbing two rebounds before the event was halted early in the fourth quarter after Indiana Pacers star Paul George sustained a compound fracture to his right leg.
Nowitzki participated in international events for his native Germany on a number of occasions despite knowing the Mavericks’ owner’s position on the issue.
In his screed against the International Olympic Committee on Saturday, Cuban didn’t resist the urge to resort to hyperbole.
“The IOC is playing the NBA,” Cuban told ESPN.com. “The IOC is an organization that has been rife with corruption, to the point where a member was accused of trying to fix an Olympic event in Salt Lake. The IOC [pulls in] billions of dollars. They make a killing and make Tony Soprano look like a saint.
“The pros in multiple sports are smart enough to not play when they are eligible free agents. But teams take on huge financial risk so that the IOC committee members can line their pockets.
“The greatest trick ever played was the IOC convincing the world that the Olympics were about patriotism and national pride instead of money. The players and owners should get together and create our own World Cup of Basketball.”
NBA commissioner Adam Silver said the league will talk about international competition later this year.