Mavs’ Mark Cuban burned by DeAndre Jordan reversal

Tim Reynolds
Associated Press

Doc Rivers gave a quick answer when asked about DeAndre Jordan returning to the Clippers.

“He never left,” the Clippers coach said.

Technically, that’s true.

In actuality, many — the Mavericks most assuredly included — probably would disagree.

The fallout from Jordan’s Texas two-step already had some saying Thursday the way the league handles the offseason moratorium that doubles as a frenzied free-agent shopping period needs to change.

The moratorium, a dead-period of sorts that is in place in part so league officials can have time to crunch all the numbers from one fiscal year and set a salary cap for the coming season, surely will be a hot topic now at NBA meetings in Las Vegas next week.

Officials from the Players Association said they fully support the right of both players and teams to consider their options during the moratorium, which is scheduled to last 11 days next year.

“Everybody realizes it’s something that has to be looked at,” Brooklyn general manager Billy King said.

Jordan formally re-signed with the Clippers on Thursday. He verbally committed to the Mavericks last Friday, but was wavering when a contingent of Los Angeles teammates arrived at his Houston home Wednesday for what apparently was a last-ditch push to keep him, and Dallas lost its man.

Clippers officials said Jordan called them and said he was having second thoughts.

“We all walk into these conversations understanding that as with any business contract, it’s not a deal until the paper is signed,” union spokeswoman Tara Greco said.

In Dallas, owner Mark Cuban was predictably unhappy. He was fined $25,000 by the NBA earlier this week for raving about what Jordan would mean to his team.

Cuban turned to social media to vent, never mentioning Jordan by name.

“I don’t think the time is right to say anything beyond the facts that he never responded to me at all yesterday,” Cuban wrote on the Cyber Dust messaging app. “Not once. To this minute I have not heard anything from him since Tuesday night.”

That was one of the biggest talking points around the league Thursday: It wasn’t so much Jordan changed his mind, but apparently no one told the Mavericks.

Rivers flatly said “no” when asked if Jordan should have told Dallas of his change of heart.

Not everyone agreed.

“I don’t see anything wrong with changing your mind, but you need to be a man and just tell them why you decided,” Miami guard Goran Dragic said.

Former NBA executive Stu Jackson wrote on Twitter that change to the moratorium system “is imminent.”

Free agency started July 1 and players can agree to deals at any time after that window opens, but could not become official until 12:01 a.m. Eastern on Thursday — the start of the new league year.

“We have to look at it and maybe start the signing, everything starts the same time when the moratorium ends rather than starting July 1,” King said.

Said Orlando general manager Rob Hennigan: “I don’t think this is the first time that something like this has happened. But that doesn’t mean that it shouldn’t be looked at.”