The Dallas Mavericks have not played the national anthem at their home games this season and do not plan to play the song at least for the remainder of the season and perhaps beyond, Mavericks owner Mark Cuban confirmed to USA TODAY Sports.
Dallas has played 12 regular-season home games this season and play Atlanta on Wednesday at home. The Mavericks just opened their arena to limited fans (1,500) at their most recent home game on Monday.
The national anthem at sporting events has been a divisive topic since former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began kneeling during the playing of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
NBA players had not knelt for the anthem until last summer at games in the bubble near Orlando, Florida, when they showed support for racial justice and equality.
Just before the NBA resumed last season in late July, Cuban tweeted, “The National Anthem Police in this country are out of control. If you want to complain, complain to your boss and ask why they don’t play the National Anthem every day before you start work.”
It started a twitter war between Cuban and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas).
“Really??!?” Cruz replied. “NBA is telling everyone who stands for the flag, who honors our cops and our veterans, to ‘piss off’? In Texas, no less? Good luck with that.”
Cuban answered: “Have some (expletive) for once @tedcruz. Speak to me. It’s my tweet.”