When I first heard that Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban is reportedly considering drafting the Baylor Bears women’s basketball sensation Brittney Griner in the second round of this year’s draft, I had to make sure it wasn’t an April Fool’s joke. All jokes aside, the eccentric owner told ESPN-Dallas he’s has been thinking of adding the 6-foot-8, three-time All-American and Big 12 Player of the Year to his Mavericks squad.
Cuban told the media:
If she is the best on the board, I will take her. I’ve thought about it. I’ve thought about it already. Would I do it? Right now, I’d lean toward yes, just to see if she can do it. You never know unless you give somebody a chance, and it’s not like the likelihood of any late-50s draft pick has a good chance of making it.
He added that if they decide not to use a second-round draft pick on her, he would have “no problem whatsoever” in inviting her to tryout for his team.
There is no doubt that Griner is the best player in women’s basketball today–and there is a very real probability that she is the best female to ever play the game. In her career with the Lady Bears, she scored 3,283 points, blocked 748 shots (an NCAA record), and dunked the ball 18 times while leading her team to their first ever national championship title.
The obvious question here is can she be at all competitive against men?
As amazing as she is, I have a hard time imaging her being able to play against the top players in the NBA. After all, it’s an entirely different ball game.
It’s hard to say if Cuban truly believes that Griner has what it takes to compete in the NBA or if he sees this as an outstanding and unique marketing opportunity, but knowing what we know of Cuban’s mind for business, I would have to believe it’s the latter.
Cuban is certainly no stranger to crazy ideas, but I have to say, this could be the craziest one he’s had yet. Or, it could be marketing brilliance. Or maybe Griner truly as what it takes to prove a lot of fans wrong.
Griner, after receiving word of Cuban’s idea, tweeted out, “I could hold my own. Let’s do it.”
What do you think?