Mavericks Slapped With Massive Fine For 'Tanking'

While the NBA usually turns a blind eye to bad teams 'tanking' their seasons in order to position themselves for a better chance in the Draft Lottery, the blatant way in which the Dallas Mavericks tried to pull it off was just a little too much for commissioner Adam Silver & Co. 

Mark Cuban and the Mavs have been hit with a three-quarters-of-a-million-dollar fine.

Citing that the Mavs "demonstrated... the organization’s desire to lose the game in order to improve the chances of keeping its first-round pick," the NBA fined Dallas $750,000. 

Luka Dončić (after one quarter), Kyrie Irving, Maxi Kleber, Tim Hardaway Jr., Josh Green and Christian Wood were all held out of a must-win game to keep their playoff hopes alive at the end of the season, in order to try to protect a Top-10 protected lottery pick that they stood to lose to the New York Knicks had they won the game.

"The Dallas Mavericks' decision to restrict key players from fully participating in an elimination game last Friday against Chicago undermined the integrity of our sport," said Joe Dumars, NBA Executive Vice President, Head of Basketball Operations. "The Mavericks' actions failed our fans and our league."

Before that 81st game of the season against the Chicago Bulls, head coach Jason Kidd said that Dončić would leave the game after the first quarter and not return this season, calling it an “organizational decision.” That certainly didn't help the Mavs' case when the NBA held its investigation.  

Photo: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports