LOS ANGELES, CA – APRIL 12: Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban talks to a referee during a timeout in the game with the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on April 12, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. The Mavericks won 120-106. 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 Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

The NBA fined the Dallas Mavericks $750,000 Friday for their controversial decision to “rest” players during a recent key game.

The league had announced an investigation after the Mavs’ April 7 loss to the Chicago Bulls, and after a week of study, cited the Mavericks for “conduct detrimental to the league.”

According to the NBA’s statement, “The Mavericks violated the league’s player resting policy and demonstrated through actions and public statements the organization’s desire to improve the chances of keeping its first-round pick in the 2023 NBA Draft.”


Fans and NBA insiders immediately ripped the Mavericks after that loss, claiming the team blatantly tanked in order to improve their chances of keeping their 2023 first-round draft choice. The team rested several stars, including Luka Dončić and Kyrie Irving, in a key game that had playoff implications.

Under terms of the trade that brought Kristaps Porzingis to Dallas in 2019, the Mavericks would keep their 2023 first-round pick if it were in the top 10, but give it to the New York Knicks if it were outside the top 10.

Tanking has been an issue in the NBA for years, but there’s been more debate about it this year given the 2023 draft features several potential mega-stars at the very top, led by French phenom Victor Wembanyama.

NBA fans generally disagreed with the NBA’s decision. Some argued the penalty was far too light, and others pointed out the Mavericks didn’t invent tanking.

[NBA Communications]

About Arthur Weinstein

Arthur spends his free time traveling around the U.S. to sporting events, state and national parks, and in search of great restaurants off the beaten path.