Cuban vs. The Bloggers

Henry Abbott of TrueHoop has a great post today about the ongoing war between Mark Cuban and the bloggers he recently banned from his locker room.

The world’s suspicion is that we bloggers might be raving lunatics. By being professional journalists, and reasonable people who not only do not drool on ourselves, but also shower, smile, and shake hands, we make the Mavericks look like the nutty ones for banning us.

Also, it has never really crossed my mind that we bloggers might lose this fight in the long run. It’s important that Cuban’s cute little idea not catch on among other owners who might have some beef with some blogger. But more and more serious-minded writers and readers, on mainstream media sites and on independent sites, are realizing that blog software is useful. So, knowing we’re going to win makes it hard to get too stressed.

Cuban’s new policy banning bloggers from the Mavericks locker room completely shocked me, especially since he’s known as one of the most blog-friendly figures in American sports. The whole situation smelled fishy to me from the beginning, and I think Henry hit the nail on the head: this wasn’t a policy to “save space in the Mavericks locker room”, as Cuban has stated many times since the new policy was announced. This is a personal war between Cuban and Tim McMahon, one that Cuban is going to win every time because he’s got the power to do whatever we wants with his locker room.

Mark has lost plenty of cool points with me. He’s been a polarizing figure in the NBA since the moment he arrived, but I’ve always been a big supporter of the guy in pretty much every venture he’s gone into. HDNet Fights is a perfect example. I love the fact that he’s showing a ton of MMA shows from promotions that we’d normally never get to see and giving these young fight promotions access to his cable channel, thereby giving them the kind of exposure they could mostly only dream about. Banning bloggers from his locker room, especially when McMahon is the only credentialed blogger for 90% of Mavericks games, is a step in the wrong direction and I hope he realizes it’s a big mistake before the backlash grows any bigger.