CLEVELAND, OH – MAY 26: Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert celebrates after defeating the Atlanta Hawks during Game Four of the Eastern Conference Finals of the 2015 NBA Playoffs at Quicken Loans Arena on May 26, 2015 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Cavaliers defeated the Hawks 118-88. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Despite being a successful businessman and multi-billionaire, Dan Gilbert has shown himself prone to making some questionable decisions in public.

There is the infamous comic sans letter to LeBron James, which Gilbert furiously typed after the star left Cleveland for greener pastures in Miami. But now, thanks to a feature from ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, we know he also wanted to jokingly announce the signing of Dennis Rodman, and better yet, once sabotaged his own head coach with a fart machine.

Yes, Gilbert once played one of the most sophomoric pranks imaginable on former head coach Mike Brown during a postgame news conference.

A lover of practical jokes, Gilbert once wanted to dummy up a fake news release that the Cavs were signing Dennis Rodman to a 10-day contract and put it out on April Fools’ Day; he was talked out of that one. After a playoff victory over the Washington Wizards 10 years ago, Gilbert had a remote-controlled fart machine installed under coach Mike Brown’s seat. When Brown went up to the dais for the postgame news conference, Gilbert stood in the back and worked the controls. Brown was flummoxed — although the microphones didn’t pick up the sounds.

The anecdote comes from a story focused on how James has worked to install the same serious, professional culture he experienced in Miami to Cleveland. As Windhorst illustrates, the Cavaliers did not make it easy on James. It has been an uphill battle that goes all the way to the top.

Based on this latest bit of information, you might think the Warriors cannot possibly deal with more owner-related headaches than their NBA Finals opponents do. But Golden State owner Joe Lacob gives Gilbert a run for his money. Lacob is not running around team facilities with a whoopee cushion, but his arrogance about the team’s success (and his own blackjack skills) caused waves both inside and outside the organization.

This is just more proof owners are no better than you or I, they just happen to have a ridiculous amount of money.


About Ben Sieck

Ben is a recent graduate of Butler University where he served as Managing Editor and Co-Editor-in-Chief for the Butler Collegian. He currently resides in Indianapolis.