Cuban comes off as just wanting attention

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So why has Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban suddenly decided to throw stones at the NFL?

Maybe Cuban is envious of the NFL’s success, which has left all other major American pro sports in the dust.  Or maybe he’s offering free advice to the NFL, in the hopes that the owners will avoid the slaughtering of the hog.

Maybe Cuban knows the NFL won’t abandon its current course, and that in 10 years Cuban inevitably will be proven right.

Or maybe he simply just wants to quench his insatiable smedium T-shirt thirst for attention.

For now, I’m leaning toward the latter option.  Cuban has a well-documented “look at me” streak, and his comments from Sunday followed by a 1,585-word Facebook post on Monday seem to be nothing more than a way to photobomb the NFL’s unparalleled and ever-growing success.

The initial comments likely sprang in part from frustration regarding the chasm between the NBA and the NFL.  The elaboration likely came from the surge of notoriety that his initial comments triggered.

Regardless, if he’s right about the inevitable implosion of the NFL, he’d be better off standing back and letting it happen.  By making an elaborate case for the eventual failure of the NFL, Cuban has given the billionaires who didn’t earn that money by being stupid further incentive to continue to search for ways to strengthen the already indelible bond with millions of football fans.

Cuban’s basic arguments are predictable.  He says parents won’t want their kids to play football.  As if that will choke off the supply of elite athletes who eventually will become old enough to tell mom and dad that they’re going to do what they want to do — and that what they want to do is play football.

Cuban also believes player behavior will alienate fans.  But if that hasn’t happened yet, it never will.  Instead, the periodic misadventures of players, coaches, and (as of late week) an owner serves to enhance the ultimate reality show that is the NFL.  Does the league like having those things happen?  No.  Does it ultimately hurt the product in any way?  Absolutely not.

Off-field incidents add intrigue, and intrigue enhances interest.  Interest translates to higher and higher TV ratings.

Cuban likewise believes that the league eventually will excessively saturate the weekly TV calendar, given the attempt to make Thursday night the latest major NFL destination.  But he ignores the fact that further expansion will be difficult, given the requirement that the NFL avoid Fridays and Saturdays from early September through early December as part of the federal broadcast antitrust exemption.  That leaves Tuesdays and Wednesdays, expansion to which is impractical.

Even so, many fans would actually prefer to have the wekly cluster of games spread throughout the week.  The true saturation occurs at 1:00 p.m. ET every Sunday, when fans struggle to keep up with too many games all at the same time.  And so the Red Zone concept has helped turn an otherwise irritating experience into one of the league’s newest sources of fan addiction.

Some hogs simply never get slaughtered; football has become deeply ingrained in the American experience.  Nothing else can bring a live TV audience together by the multiple millions.  And pro football has shown that it transcends the periodic shifts in tastes and trends.  For more than 55 years since the NFL title game between the Colts and Giants demonstrated the power of televised professional football, the league has grown and grown and grown and grown.

While there’s a limit to the growth of the sport in the United States, it’s unlikely to reverse itself any time soon.  And so the NFL will continue to focus on the far bigger challenge of growing the sport in other countries.

100 responses to “Cuban comes off as just wanting attention

  1. Disagree. He doesn’t want or need attention.

    He’s smarter than most of us.

    You don’t have to like him, but you do need to face the facts.

  2. Sure why take the advice of someone who has a pretty damn successful track record? Which I guess means this dissertation on how he is incorrect is an appropriate response?
    Kool-Aid spill on aisle 1…..

  3. The NFL will be fine. For no other reason than the fact Americans love football. The NBA is a much poorer product than the NFL. 80% of the leagues fans in the NBA going into the season knowing that there is a very limited chance their team wins a championship. The NFL sells that false hope, the NBA is too predictable.

    I understand Cuban’s comments but really I think at the end of the day his points are pretty weak.

  4. WHy would anyone think that an owner of an NBA team is any wiser about the demise of pro football than the billionaire owners of NFL teams?

    I understand he’s successful, smart, and rich, but what gives him the psychic advantage over those rich guys?

  5. Jealousy is the green-eyed Maverick.

    The NBA is having problems…not the NFL. The more NFL, the better. Me thinks Cuban just wants an NFL franchise.

  6. He is just jealous that his sport doesn’t grow, but then how can it when a few teams buy championships. There is something to say for parity.

  7. I very much agree with this take. It was inappropriate for Cuban to offer his consulting advice unless he was actually going to do a thorough and professional job in that regard. It’s too bad because he is such a smart guy and real solid consulting help would be invaluable for the NFL if they would listen, but then again that could strengthen the NFL too much and threaten his NBA business. So he only gave them advice that was tied into a benefit for him, and you just shouldn’t be doing that. Go all the way and help them out or voice your concerns more privately.

  8. Lol when looking at the headline I was interested to see who said this about cuban, I was looking forward to reading a response from an NFL franchise owner. Lol pretty funny that they try to criticize a billionaire’s take on this.

  9. I think the bigger problem the NFL faces is not over-saturation, but over-charging. Keep raising ticket prices and NFL licensing prices and the average fan that has been picking up the tab will be priced out of the market.

  10. Why does anyone care care what Mark Cuban has to say? In 30 seconds I’ll happily go back to not knowing who he is.

  11. Baseball was once a far bigger monopoly than football is currently. Yet within a few decades it was overtaken by football. To make blanket statements that there’s no possible way the NFL will ever fall is to ignore history.

    As big as the NFL is today, things are far more precarious than this article lets on. All you need for a fall is for the next generation to be less into it than people are currently–people don’t have to abandon the sport…just be less enthralled. The concussion problems and parents being less inclined to have their sons play, rules changes that fans don’t like, overseas expansions turning into a debacle… Those points could all go badly for the NFL.

  12. The NBA is on TV 7 days a week for 8 months a year. Saturation much? In a recent USA Today/Forbes fan poll, the NBA came in as the 5th most popular sport behind NFL, college football, MLB, and NASCAR. This reeks of new commish Adam Silver, who said the NBA can and will compete with the NFL, and his goons firing some shots across the bow. Sure….its plausible and Cuban makes some valid and interesting points, but this is pot calling the kettle black with the “people will get sick of it” and “its too much” he just described his own league way more than the NFL.

  13. “Many fans prefer the games spread out during the week ” – did you mean owners ? The players sure don’t and the Thursday games , even on the rare occasion thy have a decent match upSUCK.

    The quality of play is putrid and will be so until they give the teams a bye the Sunday BEFORE the games. Even super athletes can’t fully recover from the previous game in 3 days; which shows the hypocrisy of the player safety cries – game planning suffers and if they want to prove Cuban right feed us more watered down product – and all of them need to keep corporate logos the hell off the uniforms

  14. Considering how successful he is, I highly doubt hes trying to garner attention from the likes of the NFL. Most millionairs in his position dont have a pot to piss in when it comes to business sense.

    Mark Cuban is right. We’ve been saying it for years. Keep strangling the golden goose and you will end up with bronze eggs.

    He doesnt need anybodies attention, and frankly, he was asked. He didnt just offer up his opinion to anyone who would listen.

    Saying Mark Cuban wants attention is far fetched.

  15. Possibly, however his outlook is interesting to ponder, and virtually anything in life can be saturated, even The NFL. I do know this much: if someone during the 1930-1950s predicted that MLB would not be the number one, most popular American sport in the coming decades of the twentieth century, people would have scoffed at the idea. As a matter of fact, fans during that same period of time would have hooted at anyone who predicted that the popularity of college football would have been trumped by professional football. Time will tell how prescient Cuban is or isn’t. Either way, he is far too successful and clever a person to be completely discounted.

  16. Cuban should buy an NFL team, The Fins, I’m sure he could straighten them out because Ross has no clue!!! All the B/S idiot Goodell is trying to do will kill the NFL!!! Cuban is RIGHT!!!

  17. “You don’t have to like him, but you do need to face the facts.”

    And what are the “facts” you speak of anyways? It’s a fact that the NFL will implode in ten years? Just because Cuban says so? Let’s make a bet on that and see what the facts really are a decade from now.

    Florio is right. Cuban has a need for attention and if he really wanted the NFL to fall why would he warn them? It doesn’t make any sense. The league will probably not always be this popular but I’ll take any form of football over a game where every other possession ends with a whistle, some guy whining about the call, and some foul shots.

  18. Please inform Mr. Cuban, for me, that I have never been a fan of basketball, and that will never likely change. Should I become weary of football, there are all those Sue Grafton novels I’ve never read, and I might even take up macramé. But I won’t watch, or care about, basketball.

  19. More likely Cuban wants a piece of the NFL Owners’ pie. There doesn’t look like there will be NFL team for sale or league expansion with new teams. Therefore he goes to his only option which is attacking the best sport’s league in America.

  20. I don’t know if Cuban is correct or not. I do know I hate Thursday night games and rarely watch them.

  21. I disagree with Cuban for a couple of the reasons you cite. However, no professional sport should aspire to be the ultimate reality tv show. Reality tv is a blight on popular culture.

  22. Once upon a time Baseball was called “Americans past time”

    Mark Cuban like or dislike is talking the truth. Look at the programs the NFL already supports Susan G Komen and the Wounded Warriors. 2 of the most corrupt charities that make the most money and distribute the absolute least of it.

    Wounded Warriors collected 154 Million last year. 5% of that actually helped people……..FIVE PERCENT

    Remember this when you see another commercial for the Wounded Warriors this coming season.

    The NFL is already a hog. The slaughter happens on the day they change the NFL to a Pay Per View commodity.

  23. I love NFL football and very much dislike Mark Cuban. But Mark Cuban is 1 Million percent correct on this (except for his “implosion” prediction).

    These present NFL owners are less interested in the game, its heritage and its integrity than they are in finding their next billion dollars. They seem willing to ruin the game we love in order to make more money than they and their children will ever have a chance to spend in their lifetimes.

    These billionaire owners are trained to think that unless you are expanding by a certain percentage each year, you’re losing. But that’s not always true, particularly when you own a monopoly like the NFL.

    There’s an old Latin saying: “Pecunia non satiat avaritiam, sed irritat.” – “Money does not satisfy greed, but irritates it”. There is your present day NFL in a short phrase.

  24. I realize he is smarter than me and has more money, but his comments reek of jealousy, and reflect exactly how I feel about the NBA. Can’t tell you the last time I watched an NBA game from start to finish? Use to watch religiously back when Doc, Bird, Magic, and Jordan played.

  25. Before you people think you know more than Cuban, just remember you don’t make as much money as this guy if you don’t know what you’re doing in this world. What he said about oversaturation in general is very true. I would take his opinion seriously.

  26. Cuban is a billionaire, not because he’s a genius, there was lots of luck involved. So…stop telling us how brilliant he is. The article is spot on. He’s a “look at me” freak!

  27. Cuban could be right and obviously time will tell.

    All it takes is a lockout or strike to slaughter the hog much in the way baseball was slaughtered back in 1994. They’ve yet to rebound.

    P.S. MLB had a surge with the home runs a couple of years later but the hog eventually died.

  28. It sad how many people here want Cuban to be right on the seemingly inevitable and eventual implosion of the NFL.

    Go follow Basketball and stop coming to comment on a sport you obviously despise and leave the NFL to the grown ups, kids.

  29. MLB got little-brothered by the NFL because baseball is borrrring. Once TV made plain as day the differences in the two spectacles — the NFL made one deep inroad after another.

    Baseball is simple. So much of baseball is “formula” and “percentages.” There’s almost as little strategy in baseball is a single frame of bowling.

    Football is far more advanced on many levels.

    Baseball was one king because no one knew any better. Once the information got disseminated, football destroyed baseball, and everything else. It is the greatest game.

  30. Anyone who ignores Cuban does so at their own risk. Like him or not, he’s smart as a whip and is usually three (or five) steps ahead of the pack on most things. The NFL needs to tap the brake a bit. I don’t need (nor am I interested) in pro football four or five days a week.

  31. Cuban comes off as extremely jealous of the NFL’s success and the NBA’s lack thereof.

  32. He clearly wants to buy an NFL team and he probably has the wealth to do it. He also enjoys expressing his opinions and enjoys the limelight.
    With the passing of Ralph Wilson today, don’t be surprised if Cuban is a prospective future owner.

  33. The reason some fans (not including me) don’t like Thursday night football as much as regular football is the quirky rules regarding team selection. Per league rules, every team must get to play at least one primetime game. Since the good teams are always picked by the broadcaster itself themselves on Sunday night, and because the NFL does it’s level best to have good matchups on Monday night, that leaves about a dozen really bad teams that get relegated to Thrusday night to get their shot at primetime. As a result, we often get worse than league average teams in the Thursday night matchup.
    Any further expansion of games will not have this drawback because the scrubs already have been satisfied by Thursday night football. Bring on Saturday night NFL and as late west coast game on Monday night. The more the better.

  34. I think he has a point about the saturation. I know the audience here is of the rabid-fan type who will say they never get enough, and I check this site about 5 times a day, but I am tired of football by the end of the season. I like a 16 game season that only plays on Sundays and Mondays. Except for the Superbowl, that should be on Saturday night.

  35. When was the last time Cuban was right about anything? When he sold that dog of a *broadcasting* company to yahoo in middle of the original tech boom almost 20 years ago now methinks.

  36. The NFL is gonna have games 4 nights a week… He’s worried that we’d watch that instead of a NBA game featuring the Pelicans vs Bobcats. Smh.

  37. The guy is a brilliant businessman and a billionaire. I think he knows a little something about good business practices and what can happen if you push to hard and get greedy. Its not like he’s really making anything up, because I actually believe that the NFL is on the verge of being overexposed, and its all directly tied to money. The powers that be aremore focused on the cash, and how they can change the game to draw more casual viewers(ie..more and more defensive players being fined/suspended for playing the game like they have since Pop Warner)

    Offense rules in todays game, and its approaching JOKE status

  38. yeah, talk to major league baseball. things change, times change, people change. Knowing what i know now, my son would not have played hs football. 3 concussions. thankfully ok and in college. sports evolve. the nfl in 15 – 20 will just resemble a bit of the game today. change is excelerating. i do think mark would make a great owner. side bet. redskins change their name within 3 yrs. over/under? never is never forever.

  39. They should do away with the Thursday games. The greed for more money is hurting the NFL product. Players are getting hurt in that game at a more rapid pace.

    How many times do we have to hear after a Thursday game “[insert player name] is lost for the year” before they do something about it.

  40. “It sad how many people here want Cuban to be right on the seemingly inevitable and eventual implosion of the NFL.”

    Yup, I agree 100%. Cuban and those who agree with him only have weak analogies to try and prove their point. The NFL has high ratings, tons of money, and actual concrete proof that their product is still on the rise.

    It’s an inferiority complex. Nobody likes winners and seeing a huge corporation fall brings glee to a lot of people I guess. Anybody hoping to see the NFL fall is going to have a heck of a long wait ahead of them. For every disillusioned fan posting here there’s 1000 more that can’t wait until September.

  41. Mark Cuban is right – the NFL is like the housing market in 2007 and it will burst. Eventually, people will get tired of the constant thirst for more money.

    Cuban is one of the brightest minds in our generation – go look at the history of – the guy is extremely gifted.

  42. NFL owners are corporate CEO’s , the owners are businessmen first and for the first time in NFL history they don’t derive their income solely from their team.
    Oil baron, chain stores etc. Are the owners and as such they have no intent on letting this business venture languish.
    As Mark Cuban well knows, as a business mogul himself, they will explore every avenue possible, demand the highest level of performance production possible to ensure their corporation’s future.
    These aren’t players and this isn’t a game.
    They are employees expected to do their job and further the corporations value to its stockholders and consumers.
    The Future is in technological advances of these “games” getting that product to the consumer faster via more avenues.
    The Directv bottleneck will giveway to streaming & other technologies.
    The Future is bright for all concerned.

  43. We won’t know for sure until 10 years from now, but I think Cuban has a point. The NFL product no Thursday nights is not nearly as good as the product on Sunday and Monday, and the home team has an enormous advantage due to the extra practice day, while the visiting team travels.

    Add in ticket prices, forcing fans to pay regular season prices for preaseason scrimmages, and this absurd idea of London games, and it wouldn’t see me to see arrogance bite the NFL owners.

    I don’t think the league will fold, but it’s hard to regain customers once you have lost them. Look at MLB. They had to look the other way during the steriod era in order to recover from the cancelled World Series.

  44. ….. says the man who is employed as he is because of the NFL.

    Sorry people but the NFL at the moment really is ancient Rome with a countdown to it’s demise at it’s own hands.

    You don’t to be smart nor a billionaire to see this.

    Iceberg, right ahead.

  45. He’s partially correct, every year the NFL adds a handful of stupid rules, which takes away from the game and the fans enjoyment of the game, honestly I am not sure it will take 10 yrs, pretty soon there will be no kickoffs, extra points, you will only be able to hit players in a one inch patch sewn to their jerseys or pull their flag, It is so ridiculous, already is not the sport I grew up playing and loving… implosion has already begun in my eyes.

  46. This would have more credibility coming from someone NOT associated with the NBA, a league led by losers that claims it’s on the rise even as it circles the toilet drain.

  47. ‘former’ and ‘latter’ refer to 2 options. ‘first’ and ‘last’ to multiple. you’re the better of the 4 writers.

  48. Cuban is right. From a fan standpoint, a longer season would be awesome, but I realize that injuries would compromise the quality of the game so its not really feasible. Craming games every night of the week on 14 different channels is just stupid.

  49. I agree with Cuban but for some reasons that aren’t listed in the rather lengthy article.

    Like Cuban or not , he is a very successful business man and knows a little something about pro sports. He just isn’t saying what a lot of people want to hear.

  50. Did you know there are only about 11 minutes of actual action in every nfl game, and over 100 commercials? The rest is analytics and commercials. the demographics are changing, most echo boomers are not into football as much as the boomer generation was. The stadium exrience is not worth the price as he nfl knows which is why they have lowered the ticket price in the weak markets.
    No one knows for sure but the salaries players are getting is unsustainable for much longer.
    I think cuban is smater than people give him credit for.
    Remember the old business saying pigs get fatter while hogs get slaughtered. Has the nfl become a hog?

  51. This is an entirely too defensive of a reaction.

    It costs $85 plus fees (last time i bought tickets face value) for 1 ticket to sit in the nose bleeds at Lincoln Financial Field. There’s already a concern about fans staying at home instead of going to games because the stadium experience isn’t worth the cost. The average fan is already being priced out of watching games in the stadium. The NFL Network already has a channel that costs extra… It’s not hard to imagine where this all *could* go: paying to watch any NFL game on TV. No, it’s not happening any time soon, and 10 years is probably too short of time, but you can’t just completely dismiss the NFL’s “bubble” bursting.


  53. Or he’s right? I’m starting to tire of the league and it’s for the reasons he’s mentioned. When the league is willing to let the quality of it’s games suffer, which has clearly been the case with Thursday Night Football, in order to shove more football in our face for the purpose of shoving more money into their pockets, people are going to grow tired of it. Especially once it becomes Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays also.

    The NFL wasn’t always the most popular sports league; you’re foolish to think it will always be the most popular.

  54. The only thing,that could damage the NFL’s success, is if they put a team or teams in Europe!

  55. nba games being decided by ” free throws ” is not popular. games get rigged . mark cuban is envious.

  56. Cuban has a point, but he did not elaborate the reason. The NFL is so rich because of the TV contracts they command. They bring the eyeballs that networks need, so the networks pay.

    The problem is cable bills. Consumers are starting to balk and are moving to internet based viewing to avoid the cable bundles and high bills. ESPN and the sports channels are charged like a tax even though most viewers do not actually watch the sports shown. Once those consumers pull their funding, watch out. This will affect all sports and I will not be surprised to see teams go bankrupt.

  57. Has any league had as bad of a year as the NBA is having this year? It’s an awful product. It may get better ratings than the NHL, but the NHL is more entertaining.

  58. Cuban is right and he’s talking basic economics.

    Scarcity is what helped drive the demand.

    Think of it, when I was a kid you waited ALL week to park infront of the TV because the NFL was on Sunday and Monday. Only 2 days. Only a few games and a short season.

    That scarcity of the NFL product led to intense demand that other sports don’t see due to their longer seasons.

    Mark’s simply calling it now – expanding the NFL to Thursdays, some Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays – plus the NFL network, NFL in Europe, expanding the playoffs, expanding the league – all that does is remove the scarcity part of the equation and THAT will lower demand and the public’s willingness to keep paying the high prices.

    I think it’s hilarious some are deriding his point and who he is by saying “You should talk – the NBA is over saturated!” Listen you yourselves. He’s where the NFL is heading to –

    more games = lessening the importance of each week which means that I don’t “have” to watch each week anymore. Tune in to the last few games like the last few laps of a Nascar race to see the finish.

    more playoff teams = lessening the importance of the regular season. See baseball, basketball and hockey for the lesson on that

    NFL games on more nights = lessening the importance of making sure I catch the game, after all if I miss some game on Thursday I can always catch football on Sunday or Monday. It’s becoming less and less “appointment TV”

    Mark’s right and for VERY basic reasons and he’s simply seeing the NFL becoming what the NBA/MLB/NASCAR and to a degree NHL have already learned – scarcity is GOOD when it comes to your product. But by all means, ignore the guy already in the water when he tells you to be careful about falling in.

  59. money cannot be the issue with this guy,he is filthy,filthy rich!only thing I can think of is that he is jealous of the nfl.think of it logically,would you mind if a few of the games were sprinkled in through the week? I know I wouldn’t!the nba is the one that needs help.i cannot stand to watch it!

  60. seems a lot of fans are more concerned with the owners making money than getting the enjoyment of the games……I know I really don’t care how much money they make when im sitting down to watch at 12:45 and salivating for kickoff!

  61. Got to agree with Cuban for a different reason. Consider an NFL game is allowed three hours per telecast and the game is one hour of actual play. 15 minutes of review and BS at halftime leaving one hour and 45 minutes of advertisements. This does not include a talking head telling you what’s on TV that night or durning the week while the game is in progress. Also the advertisement videos shown at the left hand corners of your screen.

    Advertisements, that’s what will get the hogs slaughtered.

  62. Can anyone give me a reason to validate what he says aside from “he is a millionaire we should trust him”. Because that philosophy never let anyone down.
    The baseball argument doesn’t work because football pushed it out, what other sport will push football out?
    The golden goose analogy doesnt work either because it assume people will eventually just get bored with football. Football is to chaotic to get bored with.

  63. chargerdillon is one of those type of people where all his knowledge comes from political meme’s on facebook and has to force what he learns in every argument

  64. So he is telling it like it s but we are going to discredit him because he has cried wolf so many times before. Pretend it’s someone else more likable saying what he said, then it would be more accepted.

    The turnoff is possible with everything else in play such as new stupid rules, transforming the game to something we don’t recognize, blown calls, players on the news cycle, denying Superbowls unless they get new stadiums, or some particular beef the fans in your town has against its team. If not for the contract with the NCAA, they would expand to Saturdays and that won’t fly.

  65. Cuban sounds like a megalomaniac to me.

    Perhaps he has a vendetta vs. the NFL owners who will not let him buy a franchise in their league?

  66. I’m sorry I love football and will watch till my eyes fail. What I don’t understand is everyone saying Cuban is a smart business man. Jerry Jones,Jeffery lurie ,the mar as are all smart successful businessmen.

  67. Cuban has to realize that NFL>>>>>NBA!! This will always be true since football is America’s sport!

  68. And baseball is failing because it does not appeal to intercity youth the way basketball and football does. Further more basketball sucks I mean there’s like six teams in the Nba worth watching Even those teams aren’t worth watching because they bitch and moan the whole time for call

  69. Its the NFL we are talking about, It would take much more than that to saturate the market, its simple math 16>>>>>82 and not even close, he is wrong this time not to mention jealous.

  70. 5 games in London in 2015, talk of the Super Bowl being played overseas, concussion issues, greedy owners, live game attendance being priced out of the average working stiffs affordability range, over saturation of off season coverage.

    I like the direction the NFL is heading.

  71. Only problem the nfl has is that is listens to the new owners more than the older owners. Sorry but the old guard knows what’s right.

  72. I’d rather watch 2 horrible NFL teams before I watch a game where 80% of the NBA players flop all over the floor when someone just puts a finger on them and get the penalty smh

  73. A lot of what Cuban says often makes sense but its his delivery. I’m sure he’s quite brilliant with stellar business acumen but his delivery and style make him come off as the idiot son who fell ass backward into money. I think he’s self-made, but he never gives that impression so his comments make many people want to shoot the messenger.

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