Wednesday, June 22, 2011

When Immature Billionaires Try Their Hand At Lawyering

Ross Perot Jr., former owner of the Dallas Mavericks (and still a 5% owner), sued Mark Cuban's investment entity in 2010, alleging that Cuban was financially mismanaging the team. Following the Mavericks' recent title win, Cuban's legal team filed the following motion for summary judgment today in Dallas County court (via Dallas Observer):

Funny stuff, but the 3-page legal filing is borderline legal malpractice by Cuban's lawyers. It may be worth a chuckle to show Nowitzki with the trophy, but one picture alone doesn't address the plaintiff's arguments. Is Cuban doing a good job of maximizing the entity's profits? As I noted in my most recent post, the billionaire Cuban is known for paying starters's money to backups like Brendan Haywood and Shawn Marion (who was supposed to be the team's backup SF/PF this season before Caron Butler's injury), and before them, guys like Antoine Walker, Antawn Jamison, Nick Van Exel, Juwan Howard, and several others. Cuban also fired head coach Avery Johnson in spring 2008 with three years and $12 MM of obligation remaining on his contract. Cuban may not mind losing money (or failing to maximize profits) on the Mavs, but Perot Jr. might. A lone championship does not necessarily imply fat operating profits. The championship itself will likely raise the franchise's financial value somewhat, but the defense attorneys still must address Cuban's 11 prior years of financial stewardship.

To Cuban's credit, the Mavs ranked first in the league in 2010-11 in home attendance as a percent of arena capacity. However, the summary judgment motion did not mention this, only listing, again, that photo of Nowitzki with the LOB.

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