Mark Cuban is known as being one of the most successful, outspoken and interesting entrepreneurs in the world. He is also the passionate and very present owner of the Dallas Mavericks and very much a fabric of the NBA for the past 16 years or so.
Being such a massive success in business and as the owner of the professional basketball franchise, Cuban has very high standards as you would guess. He has never been shy to voice his opinion, whether complimentary or not, on players, officials or even the NBA league office officials. One player in the past couple years that he has refused to endorse on the same level of the rest of his NBA counter parts is Russell Westbrook.
Before the Thunder eliminated the Mavericks in Game 5 of the western conference first round last season (a game in which Westbrook had 36-12-9) Cuban said that a true superstar can carry a mediocre roster to 50 wins and a postseason series win. Which in all fairness, Westbrook hasn’t had the chance to really do until this season.
Despite his success on the court and incredible ability to take over a game in many different ways, Cuban has never viewed Westbrook as a true superstar and re-iterated that stance this weekend.
“He’s putting up superstar numbers, That’s for damn sure.” Cuban said of Westbrook as the Thunder took on the Houston Rockets on Friday night. “I’m not taking anything away from what he’s been able to accomplish, but I’m not going to change my definition. He’s putting up superstar numbers. You can’t deny that.”
Cuban then re-iterated his stance on the issue:
“That’s no disrespect to Russell,” Cuban said. “He’s been a beast. Few have done what he’s done, but I’ll stick by my definition. I’m not saying that he’s not going to prove me wrong and that he [won’t be] a superstar by the end of the year. That’s fine, but I’ll stick by my definition.”
Apparently seven straight triple-doubles and averaging a triple-double (31-11-11) through 24 games is not enough for Mark Cuban. The Thunder are currently on pace to win 51 games and position themselves to have home court advantage in the first round of the postseason. Maybe Westbrook will finally be able to meet Cuban’s definition of a superstar by the end of the season, not that he cares.