Patrick Dumont

Southwest Notes: Cuban, Doncic, Sengun, Pelicans, Spurs

Confirming prior reporting from Forbes, Marc Stein (Substack link) cites sources who say that Mark Cuban‘s sale agreement with Miriam Adelson and Patrick Dumont stipulates that the Mavericks‘ new majority owners have the option to buy an additional 20% of the franchise in four years.

For the time being, Cuban has retained control of 27% of the team and reportedly still maintains a voice in the personnel decisions, though he’s no longer the final decision-maker. However, if Adelson and Dumont exercise that option a few years from now, the extra shares would come out of Cuban’s stake in the team, reducing his holdings to below 10%.

Here’s more from around the Southwest:

  • Luka Doncic likely won’t finish higher than second in MVP voting this season, but the fact that he’s legitimately in the conversation is more important to the Mavericks than him actually winning the award, opines Tim Cato of The Athletic. As Cato explains, this version of Doncic raises Dallas’ ceiling and makes the team a bona fide contender.
  • Alperen Sengun (ankle/knee) won’t return for either of the Rockets‘ final two games of the season, Kelly Iko of The Athletic confirms (via Twitter). Sengun is a candidate for this year’s Most Improved Player award, but because he only appeared in 63 games, an independent doctor would need to rule that his injury is likely to sideline him through at least May 31 in order for him to be eligible for award consideration.
  • Although New Orleans has yet to clinch its playoff spot, the team looks better than it has in years and is on track to win the most games it has in a season since being rebranded as the Pelicans in 2013. James Herbert of CBS Sports checks in on the Pelicans to get a sense of why this year’s team is more dangerous than the one we’ve seen in recent seasons, as well as what the next steps are for the franchise.
  • Victor Wembanyama has been everything the Spurs hoped he’d be in his first year in the NBA and figures to only get better going forward, but will San Antonio be able to build a contender around the young star? Isaac Levy-Rubinett of The Ringer explores that question, considering the players the Spurs already have on their roster, their draft assets, and a potential trade target.

Mavs Notes: Kuzma, G. Williams, Washington, Gafford, Front Office

Following up on reports that Kyle Kuzma was nearly traded from the Wizards to the Mavericks last week, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst said on the latest Hoop Collective podcast (YouTube link) that he believes Dallas was offering two first-round picks to Washington in its proposal for the veteran forward.

One of those first-rounders was almost certainly the 2024 pick that Dallas acquired from Oklahoma City, which will likely end up being the more favorable of the Clippers’ and Thunder’s first-rounders. According to Tim MacMahon on The Hoop Collective, the Mavs and Thunder “very quietly” agreed to the deal involving that pick several days before the trade deadline, even though it wasn’t reported until Thursday.

The second first-rounder the Mavs offered for Kuzma would’ve presumably been their own 2027 pick, which was ultimately sent to Charlotte in the P.J. Washington deal instead, with top-two protection.

Windhorst, MacMahon, and ESPN’s Tim Bontemps agree it’s probably safe to assume the Mavs were looking to include Grant Williams in that potential Kuzma trade, which means the proposal might have been something like Williams, Richaun Holmes, a 2024 first-round pick, and the Mavs’ 2027 first-rounder for Kuzma. It’s unclear whether the ’27 pick would’ve had the same light protection that Dallas agreed to in its deal with Charlotte.

Ultimately, after the Wizards decided not to move forward on the Kuzma trade, Dallas ended up sending one of those first-rounders and Holmes to Washington in exchange for Daniel Gafford, completing separate deals with the Wizards and Hornets rather than just a single trade for Kuzma.

Here’s more on the Mavericks:

  • After winning his first game with the Hornets, Williams raised some eyebrows with his postgame comments, which could’ve been interpreted as a shot at his former team in Dallas, notes Brian Robb of “It’s great to get a win for the city and play for the jersey that’s across your chest, not on your back,” Williams told reporters. “Everybody touched the ball, we trusted one another, a team that never played, practiced together, every single person seemed like they had each other’s back.” MacMahon reported after the deadline that Williams had “personality clashes” and “rubbed a lot of people the wrong way” during his half-season with the Mavs, adding in the latest Hoop Collective podcast that the forward reported to Dallas out of shape this past fall.
  • Tim Cato, Josh Robbins, and Dave DuFour take a closer look at how Washington and Gafford will fit in Dallas, examining what the two newcomers will and won’t be able to do for the team.
  • New Mavericks governor Patrick Dumont spoke to Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News (subscription required) about the hierarchy within the front office under the new ownership group. While reports have indicated that Mark Cuban retained his control of basketball operations, Dumont didn’t exactly confirm that. “The way the structure works, just formally, is that I am the governor,” Dumont said. “The league wants one person to speak to, so that’s me. But I intend to get the benefit of Mark’s experience and his success. So working with him is actually a benefit to our organization. And that’s how I see it. Nico Harrison is the GM. He is the head of basketball operations. So we all get the benefit of working with Mark, but there’s one GM. That’s Nico.”

Mavs Notes: Gafford, Washington, Dumont, Williams, Draft Picks

The trade deadline additions of Daniel Gafford and P.J. Washington make the Mavericks a deeper and more explosive team, writes Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News (subscription required). The new-look roster thrived in Gafford’s and Washington’s Dallas debut on Saturday as the Mavs scored a franchise-record 47 points in the first quarter and blew out the Thunder by a score of 146-111.

“There’s going to be nights when we shoot 45 to 47 threes, and there’s going to be nights where we can dominate the paint as we did today,” head coach Jason Kidd said after the win, adding that he’s already thinking about how to manage the frontcourt duo of Gafford and Dereck Lively once the rookie center gets healthy. “… It’s good to have these options. Because we didn’t have these options earlier.”

Luka Doncic, who scored 32 points on 9-of-14 shooting in just 31 minutes, embraced the newcomers, as Townsend writes. Three of Doncic’s nine assists were on baskets by Gafford, whom Luka referred to as the sort of backup center “I’ve wanted for like three years.”

“It means a lot because it gives me the opportunity to show what I’m good at,” Gafford said. “Running the floor. Running the floor. Catching lobs. Rebounding. Screaming. At the end of the day I’m just doing my job and pretty much he was helping me to my job tonight.”

Here’s more on the Mavs:

  • New Mavericks governor Patrick Dumont isn’t just a businessman who views the team as a passive investment, according to Townsend (subscription required), who spoke exclusively to one of the key members of the new ownership group about his basketball fandom, his involvement in the team’s roster machinations, and his hopes to build a new Dallas-area arena and entertainment resort. Townsend shares more of Dumont’s comments on that prospective arena and casino-resort in a separate story.
  • Appearing on 97.1 FM in Dallas with Marc Stein on Saturday (Twitter link via Mavs Film Room), Mavericks general manager Nico Harrison pushed back on a report from Tim MacMahon of ESPN, who said that Grant Williams had “personality clashes” and “rubbed a lot of people the wrong way” in Dallas. “Grant doesn’t deserve the negativity he’s getting on social media,” Harrison said. “… He was a good teammate.”
  • The second-round draft picks the Mavericks received in their trade with the Hornets are Boston’s 2024 pick and the least favorable of the Hornets’ and Clippers’ 2028 picks, MacMahon confirms (Twitter link).
  • If the top-two protected 2027 first-round pick the Mavericks sent the Hornets in that same trade ends up at No. 1 or 2 and Dallas keeps it, Charlotte will instead receive Miami’s 2028 second-round pick, reports ESPN’s Bobby Marks (Twitter link).

Southwest Notes: Cuban, Brooks, J. Green, Pelicans

Mark Cuban has clarified his role once the Maverickssale is finalized, confirming that he will continue to handle most of the team’s personnel decisions, writes Tim MacMahon of ESPN. Cuban spoke with reporters tonight after he finished a pre-game shooting session at American Airlines Arena and said he looks forward to working with the Adelson and Dumont families, who will soon have the controlling stake in the team.

“Nothing’s really changed except my bank account,” Cuban said. “I feel really good. I think it’s a great partnership. It’s what the team needed on the court and off. I’ll still be overseeing the basketball side of it, but having a partner like Patrick and Sivan (Dumont) and Miriam (Adelson) and their ability to build and to redevelop the arena and whatever comes next beyond that just puts us in a much better position to compete. That’s all. That’s what it comes down to.”

Cuban confirmed that there’s “no contractual language” in the purchase agreement that outlines his authority, but he has an understanding with the new owners about what he’ll do. He will keep a 27% stake as the Mavericks’ sole minority owner, but admitted that Patrick Dumont, who will serve as the team’s governor, will have “final say” on every decision.

Cuban expects the new owners to focus mainly on business interests, including a long-term plan to build an arena with a resort hotel and casino. He added that the new facility will be located somewhere within the city of Dallas.

There’s more from the Southwest Division:

  • Rockets forward Dillon Brooks sat out tonight’s game with a strained oblique he suffered Tuesday and the team doesn’t have a timetable for him to return, per Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle. Jae’Sean Tate took Brooks’ place in the starting lineup, Feigen adds, while rookies Amen Thompson and Cam Whitmore both got minutes in the first quarter.
  • After Tuesday’s game, Rockets coach Ime Udoka told reporters that he has “not thought about” moving guard Jalen Green to the bench, according to Michael Shapiro of The Houston Chronicle. Green has struggled in his first season under Udoka, averaging 16.7 PPG while shooting career worsts from the field (39.4%) and three-point range (31.9%). “Obviously, with [Green] playing that way, if he was playing the other way we obviously wouldn’t struggle as much offensively and have to lean on other guys as much or play other guys minutes,” Udoka said. “We’ll continue to keep him confident, continue to [help] him improve in certain areas, and he’ll take a jump eventually.”
  • The Pelicans announced the renewal of naming rights this week for Smoothie King Center, relays Rod Walker of A statement from the team said the name will remain in place “for the foreseeable future.”

Southwest Notes: Morant, Smart, Cuban, Rockets, More

With Ja Morant poised to return from his 25-game suspension on Tuesday night vs. New Orleans, the Grizzlies‘ season is on the brink, as Morant’s absence and a plethora of injuries have created what Derrick Rose referred to as a “quagmire situation,” according to Baxter Holmes and Tim MacMahon of ESPN. As Holmes and MacMahon detail, “frustration has simmered” within the organization about the direction of the season, which has opened with 19 losses in 25 games.

But Morant’s teammates were all smiles on Monday as they discussed the point guard’s impending return, per Damichael Cole of The Memphis Commercial Appeal. The club’s top two scorers this season, Desmond Bane and Jaren Jackson Jr., have faced a level of defensive attention they’re not accustomed to, and they’re looking forward to sharing the court with a player like Morant, who will be able to divert much of that attention.

“(Morant) is going to have to deal with that,” Jackson said. “He’s going to have to turn left and turn right and see three dudes so that I can do what I do. He’s an All-NBA, Hall of Fame-type player, so you’re going to have to pay attention and if you do that, we’re going to punish you.”

Although Morant hasn’t suited up for the Grizzlies since April, the club has been ramping up his workload in practice and doesn’t anticipate imposing any real limitations on his playing time in his return, Cole notes.

“He’s going to play pretty significant minutes,” head coach Taylor Jenkins said. “… I won’t anticipate going crazy with his minutes, but I don’t think it’s any kind of restriction.”

Here’s more from around the Southwest:

  • Grizzlies guard Marcus Smart, who hasn’t played since November 14 due to a left foot sprain, is getting very close to returning to action, Cole writes in another Commercial Appeal story. “Marcus is really close,” Jenkins said. “… Somewhere in that Indiana (Thursday) and Atlanta (Saturday) time frame, we’re hopeful that he’ll be back in the lineup then.”
  • Following up on the Maverickssale ahead of the Board of Governors vote, Marc Stein says on Substack that Mark Cuban will retain a 27% stake in the franchise. Stein indicates that the new owners – the Miriam Adelson/Patrick Dumont group – will therefore have a 73% controlling interest, but there have been conflicting reports on whether every single one of the minority stakeholders are being bought out.
  • The Rockets‘ closing lineup has been far less predictable than its starting group, according to Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle (subscription required), who examines head coach Ime Udoka‘s tendency to go with the hot hands down the stretch of games. “That’s what I believe in,” Udoka said. “I pretty much said that the day I was hired. Minutes and roles are not going to be handed out. The guys that are playing well and units that are playing well are going to get those minutes. I think everybody knows that across the board.”
  • William Guillory of The Athletic takes a look at the similarities between Pelicans forward Zion Williamson and Spurs big man Victor Wembanyama, two No. 1 picks who were expected to be saviors for their respective Southwest clubs as soon as they entered the NBA, exploring how they’ve dealt with those expectations.

Vote On Mavericks Sale Reportedly Set For December 20

A vote on the proposed sale of the Mavericks to the Adelson and Dumont families will take place next week, writes Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News. A source familiar with the sale informs Townsend that commissioner Adam Silver has notified the 30 members of the league’s Board of Governors that the vote will be taken at a December 20 meeting.

Townsend’s source also says there will be only two parties remaining as shareholders once the sale is finalized. The Adelsons and Dumonts will serve as majority owners, with Mark Cuban holding a “sizeable stake” as the minority owner.

That means the five current minority owners have decided to cash out, Townsend explains. That list includes two previous majority owners, Ross Perot Jr. and the family of franchise co-founder Donald Carter.

Scheduling the vote indicates that the league has already finished vetting the new ownership group, which is led by Sands Corp. majority shareholder Miriam Adelson and her son-in-law, Patrick Dumont, who is president of the Sands Corp., Townsend adds.

The new owners are expected to be approved by a comfortable margin, according to Townsend. He notes that Adelson and Dumont have an estimated worth of about $33 billion, which would rank them among the wealthiest owners in U.S. professional sports, trailing only Clippers owner Steve Ballmer and the Walton family, which owns the NFL’s Denver Broncos.

The Adelson-Dumont family will need support from at least three-fourths of the Board of Governors for the sale to be approved.

Latest On Potential Mavericks Sale

Sands Corp. president and chief operating officer Patrick Dumont, son-in-law of Miriam Adelson, will be the family’s “foremost member” if their purchase of the Mavericks is approved by the NBA, Marc Stein writes in his latest Substack column.

It’s still not fully clear how much power Mark Cuban will have once he becomes a minority owner, even though it was reported Tuesday that he will continue to run the team’s basketball operations. Stein notes that it’s an unprecedented arrangement, and the Adelson family may want some say in personnel moves once they’re writing the checks.

Stein points out that Cuban has already ceded some decision-making to Nico Harrison, who was hired as general manager in 2021, and CEO Cynthia Marshall, who has been handling business matters since 2018. Even so, Stein found it shocking that Cuban opted to sell the team, considering that he sits near the bench at most games, maintains a visible role in the war room on draft nights, and remains involved in most personnel decisions.

League sources tell Stein that Cuban plans to be “a very active partner” to the Adelsons on basketball matters while letting the family deal with television revenues, real estate ventures and similar issues.

There’s more from Dallas:

  • The Adelson family agreed to purchase the Mavericks with an eye toward legalizing casino gambling in Texas, according to an editorial from The Dallas Morning News. Casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, who has since died, focused on Texas two years ago as the primary spot for expansion, the editorial states. Lobbying money from the Adelson family and other gambling interests has poured into the state, helping to soften any opposition. Cuban is perfect as a “primary stakeholder,” the paper adds, because he has been an advocate for building a casino in downtown Dallas.
  • The Adelson and Dumont families have issued a statement regarding their purchase of the Mavericks, tweets Tim MacMahon of ESPN. “Through our commitment and additional investment in the team, we look forward to partnering with Mark Cuban to build on the team’s success and legacy in Dallas and beyond,” it reads in part. “The goal is to win and to have a team that proudly represents the greater DFW (Dallas-Fort Worth) area and serves as a strong and valuable member of the local community.” The families are hoping to close the sale by the end of December.
  • Last year, Cuban cited the Sands Corp. as his ideal partner for a casino and resort destination, per Tim Cato of The Athletic, who notes that the Mavericks can’t leave their current home at the American Airlines Center until their lease expires in 2031.