I'm not quite sure if this is a compliment or an insult or just professional goading (the kids on the Twitter call it trolling), but Mavericks owner Mark Cuban on Friday compared the Heat to the Oakland Raiders. Whatever you want to call it, it appears Cuban is pretty bitter heading into the season, which, if I were a betting man, I might interpret as a bad sign for the Mavericks.
In the process of calling the Heat arrogant and describing the Heat as Public Enemy No.1, Cuban said it's good for the NBA when the Heat loses and added that everyone everywhere gave him standing ovations when his team defeated the Heat in 2011. Then, while describing a legacy the Heat has created, Cuban refused to call anything the Heat as accomplished a legacy. Oh, and he implied that the Heat won last year because it got lucky.
Also, Cuban said it "wouldn't be fair" to compare Micky Arison to Raiders owner Al Davis, even though that's basically, in a passive-aggressive way, exactly what he did.
Here are Cuban's quotes, first reported by The Dallas Morning News:
With the two titles, they're still like the bad guys. There's a confidence bordering on arrogance that is good for them as a team and good for us as a league because it also makes them the team that everybody wants to knock off.
They're kind of in some respects the Oakland Raiders, and I know that's going to get picked up everywhere. They're kind of like the Oakland Raiders when they were winning. I don't want to compare Micky to Al Davis -- that's not fair -- but you either love them or hate them.
That's always good for the NBA when you have a team that everybody looks forward to beating. Like when we beat them, I would go to places I've never been and people would give me a standing ovation. That's good for the NBA.
In summation, Cuban is saying the Heat is the heel of the NBA, kinda the great pro wrestling heel "Million Dollar Man" Ted Dibiase.
Cuban on the Heat getting lucky:
The NBA is a tenuous world. In 26 seconds, little things can change dynamics and legacies. In this league, to win a championship, you got to have a lot of luck. If the ball bounces to the right spot, it goes from being a brick to a hit. That's how tenuous this league is. I always hate to talk about legacies. No one ever looks at the details. They just talk in generalities.
In general terms, Cuban's team will be the third best in Texas this season.