Ice Cube Joe Johnson's Getting NBA Looks ... After BIG3 Dominance

Exclusive
ACCEPTING ALL RETIREES
TMZSports.com

Iso Joe has been straight-up KILLIN' IT in the BIG3 this season ... and his old employer has taken notice, 'cause Ice Cube tells TMZ Sports NBA scouts have been coming to watch Joe Johnson!!

The ex-NBA star was just named the 3-on-3 league's MVP ... and it was an absolute no-brainer. The guy led the league with 21.9 points a game and 3.9 assists a game for the Triplets.

Johnson was a helluva NBA player too ... he was a 7-time All-Star and, at one point in his 17-year career, averaged at least 20 points a game in 5 straight seasons.

We spoke with Cube about JJ's dominance in his league ... and he says it's gotten the attention of at least 2 NBA teams -- the Dallas Mavericks and New Orleans Pelicans.

As we previously reported ... Mavs owner Mark Cuban was front and center at the BIG3 Ballout in Dallas earlier this month ... and the dude must've liked what he saw.

So ... what happens if the Association steals his best player?? Cube ain't mad at all!!

"That's fine!" the rap legend says. "That's what it's all about. It's all about showing these guys can still play at a high level. And, if the NBA come calling, we're with that. We will definitely welcome that."

"Our players should go and play in the NBA if they can."

Cube also tells us who's on his bucket list for next year's lineup of players ... and there are some future Hall of Famers he's eyeing!!

Kristaps Porzingis I'm a Jacked Freak of Nature Now

Breaking News

No, you're not looking at Ivan Drago ... you're looking at a totally shredded Kristaps Porzingis, who's clearly taking no days off during his time off the court -- 'cause the dude is JACKED.

The 24-year-old Dallas Mavericks star posted the gym pic to IG on Wednesday ... jokingly saying it's the angle that is making him look extra buff.

Of course, 7'3" KP tore his ACL as a member of the New York Knicks back in February 2018, and hasn't been on the court since ... but it looks like the dude has been living in the gym during recovery.

Getty Composite

Just look at the difference between his rookie year in 2015 and the pic from today. Dude is yolked.

Mavs fans gotta be itchin' to see the center finally suit up in Dallas ... and Mark Cuban's gotta be happy to see his star staying busy.

Mark Cuban Luka Doncic Could Play 25 Years In NBA ... with New Medical Tech

EXCLUSIVE
KEEP THE PLAYERS PLAYING
TMZSports.com

Mark Cuban says he wouldn't be surprised if young NBA stars, like Luka Doncic, played into their 40s -- thanks to new medical technology that can prevent non-contact injuries ... and he's dead serious.

The Dallas Mavericks owner was super passionate about the new wave of injury prevention technology outside Craig's in L.A. this week ... especially after the NBA Finals, with injuries to Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson.

"Those are brutal, I feel really horrible for those guys," Cuban said.

But, in the future, Cuban sees a league where players can use tech to prepare their bodies to handle the rigors of pro basketball.

"There's new technology, sonogram-type stuff that allows you to analyze tendons," Cuban said ... "But, it's not advanced enough so we have to do some more research to figure it all out. So hopefully, that in the future, non-contact injuries will happen less."

Cuban says when he came into the league 20 years ago, players crossing the 30-year-old mark were considered old and on the decline ... but now, that's changing radically.

"We saw Dirk [Nowitzki] play until 40 years, 21 years [in the NBA] ... we'll see more that. Luka [Doncic] coming into the league today, the rookies that will get drafted this year that are 18, there's no reason why they shouldn't be able to play 25 years if they have the skill with the new advanced technology."

So, will 45 really be the new 30 in the NBA? We'll see.

Kristaps Porzingis Reportedly Cleared By Mavs ... In Latvia Fight Probe

Breaking News 5/12/19
FIGHT AFTERMATH
TMZSports.com

The Dallas Mavericks have reportedly wrapped up their investigation into that Kristaps Porzingis fight in Latvia ... and concluded he was just "in the wrong place at the wrong time."

TMZ Sports posted video showing the 7'3" superstar bloodied and pissed off on May 12 outside of a bar in his home country, after apparently being jumped.

Our sources told us the attackers were a bunch of Russians who were pissed off that Porzingis had been traded from the Knicks to Dallas.

There were reports that Porzingis may have suffered a broken hand in the melee -- but the Dallas Morning News says they spoke with a team source who says that's not true and his hands are fine.

DMN is also reporting that team officials spoke "at length" with Porzingis who insisted he was truly an innocent victim who was just in the wrong place at the wrong time ... and the team is buying his story.

Of course, the NBA could step in and punish Porzingis -- so he's not out of the woods -- but this definitely bodes well for him.

KP was traded from the Knicks to the Mavs during the 2018-19 season but didn't play as he continues to recover from a knee injury. He's expected to have a major role on the team next season.

Kristaps Porzingis Left with a Bloody Face, Torn Shirt ... After Fight in Latvia

EXCLUSIVE

12:51 PM PT -- Shams Charania of The Athletic is now reporting that the Mavericks are investigating the incident Kristaps was involved in. He says the current understanding by the team is that he was jumped at a club, assaulted and hit with objects.

The Mavericks have yet to release an official statement.

Dallas Mavericks star Kristaps Porzingis was reduced to a bloody mess in his home country of Latvia after he was apparently involved in a brawl that left him wanting more.

Eyewitnesses tell TMZ Sports ... the Euro NBA player was in his hometown of Liepaja over the weekend, where we're told he was celebrating some occasion through a number of clubs and pubs in the area.

Our sources say that a handful of Russians confronted Kristaps, supposedly upset with the fact that he was traded from the Knicks to the Mavs ... and an all-out tussle broke out. It would appear to have been pretty violent, 'cause Kristaps was bleeding from his head.

5/12/19
FIGHT AFTERMATH
TMZSports.com

This video appears to capture the aftermath of the fight ... which almost wasn't over if Kristaps would have had his way. You can see him -- again, bleeding and with a torn shirt -- being held back by a woman at first, who he shoves aside.

Kristaps charges another group that's off camera, but a couple police officers plead with him to calm down and stand down. The entire exchange seems to be going on in their native tongue, Latvian.

The Mavericks haven't said anything about the altercation, and Kristaps himself has been quiet too.

Originally Published -- 11:43 AM PT

Dirk Nowitzki Shredded Retirement Bod on Vacation in Mexico

Dirk Nowitzki's done playing ... but his body sure as hell didn't get the memo ... 'cause the recently retired NBA superstar ditched his shirt on vacation in Mexico -- and the dude looks jacked!!!

The Dallas Mavericks legend and his wife, Jessica Olsson, hit up the beach in Tulum earlier this week ... makin' a splash and enjoying every bit of the unemployment life.

Dirk's got a LOT to celebrate -- he finished his career as the 6th top scorer to ever play in the league ... and the Mavs' all-time leader in points, rebounds, blocks and games played.

Look, all that is nice and everything ... but the dude should be most proud of his beach bod.

Seriously, did anyone know the dude looked like this with his shirt off???

Anyway, congrats on a hell of a career, Dirk. We're gonna miss you.

Shawn Marion Dirk vs. Wade is Stupid ... 'Stop That Sh*t'

EXCLUSIVE
YOU CAN'T COMPARE THE TWO
TMZSports.com

If you're somewhere in a barber shop comparing the careers of Dirk Nowitzki and Dwyane Wade, you're getting on Shawn Marion's last damn nerve ... and he wants you to stop.

Both Wade and Dirk called it quits this year, so of course, the NBA community had to start talking about which guy is higher on the all-time pecking order.

It's a pretty close race any way you slice it, with Dirk having more stats, and Wade having more rings (he also played defense) so people are pretty split.

Marion played with both men, on the Mavs with Dirk and the Heat with Wade ... and he has an opinion ... he thinks everyone should shut the hell up.

"Everybody gotta compare somebody to somebody. Stop that sh*t."

Marion's aggravated point is that the 7'0" Dirk and the 6'4" Wade had two TOTALLY different games and comparing them is pointless and almost insulting to their legacies.

"Respect what they done. They both were true professionals, and they left a legacy to live and continue to live out now that they're done."

We agree, Shawn. But, just for argument's sake, we wanna know which guy you'd put with you in a pickup game for the fate of the world. We're trying to see something.

Kristaps Porzingis Under Investigation for Rape ... Accuser Told Cops He Got Violent, Called Her 'Slave'

Exclusive Details

5:55 PM PT -- Law enforcement sources tell TMZ ... the alleged victim told cops Porzingis pinned her down on a bed in his guest room, penetrated her vagina with his penis and then got violent.

The woman told cops he hit her in the face several times, spit on her, called her "my bitch" and "my slave" and said he owned her. We're told the accuser claims he stopped assaulting her as she was putting up a fight.

Former New York Knicks star Kristaps Porzingis is the target of an NYPD investigation after a woman came forward and accused him of rape ... TMZ has learned.

The woman claims Porzingis invited her to his Manhattan penthouse on February 7, 2018 -- just hours after he tore his ACL in a game at the Garden against the Bucks -- and held her down and raped her.

According to the New York Post ... the woman -- who's in her 20s and lived in the same building as Porzingis -- reported the rape to police Thursday ... and The Post claims investigators consider her story to be credible.

The accuser reportedly told cops Porzingis promised to give her $68,000 in hush money to pay for her brother’s college tuition, but then reneged ... which is why she waited to report the alleged sexual assault.

Porzingis was traded by the Knicks to the Dallas Mavericks in February. Mavs owner Mark Cuban says the team has been instructed by federal authorities not to comment on the rape allegation.

The NYPD’s Special Victims Division has reportedly taken over the case and is investigating.

We've reached out to Porzingis and his current and former teams ... no word back so far.

However, the player's attorney Roland G. Riopelle says they are aware of the woman's complaint and "unequivocally deny the allegations."

He adds they made a formal referral to the feds in December because the accuser was allegedly trying to extort Porzingis ... and the NBA is aware of the "ongoing federal investigation."

Emmitt Smith I'm Excited For Porzingis!! ... Welcome to Dallas!

EXCLUSIVE
FUTURE'S LOOKIN' BRIGHT
TMZSports.com

Kristaps Porzingis is already getting love in his new town ... 'cause Emmitt Smith is welcoming him to Dallas with open arms ... telling TMZ Sports he's stoked for the blockbuster trade!!

K.P. -- along with Trey Burke, Courtney Lee and Tim Hardaway Jr. -- was just traded to the Mavericks in exchange for DeAndre Jordan, Dennis Smith Jr. and Wesley Matthews on Thursday.

We broke the news to the Cowboys legend at the EA Sports Madden Bowl ... and the dude is pumped about the move, to say the least.

"Anything that can improve our team is great," Smith says. "With Luka [Doncic] and the guys that we actually have that are playing right now, I'm excited for where the Mavs are trying to get to."

We also asked Emmitt if he thinks K.P. and Luka will be the next best duo since David Robinson and Tim Duncan ... you'll wanna hear what he says.

Patrick Beverley Fined $25k For Ball Throw at Heckler ... You Dissed My Mom!

Breaking News
OVER THE LINE
FOX Sports

12/4 10:40 AM PT -- The move cost Beverley a nice chunk of change ... 'cause he just got slapped with a $25,000 fine for "throwing the game ball at a spectator," the NBA announced Tuesday.

L.A. Clippers player Patrick Beverley fired a basketball at a courtside heckler Sunday night after the fan allegedly said, "F*ck your mother" ... the 2nd major incident between a player and a Mavs fan in 2 weeks.

The 30-year-old guard had reportedly been trading verbal jabs with Don Knobler -- a local celeb in Dallas -- throughout the Clippers' game on Sunday ... when things reached a boiling point in the 4th quarter.

So, what set Beverley off? Don't talk about his mother.

Beverley grabbed the ball and threw it at Knobler -- who calmly collected it after it struck him in the leg. Beverley was ejected.

After the game, Beverley told reporters Knobler said, "F*ck your mother" twice.

Knobler later admitted to talking about Patrick's mom but denies using the f-bomb in his trash talk.

Seems Mavs fans have really been getting to opponents lately -- it was just Nov. 17 when Kevin Durant cussed out a different courtside fan who had been running his mouth.

Durant was fined $25,000 for the incident. He later bashed the heckler as "corny and weak."

In both instances, Durant and Beverley alerted refs and security about the heckling fans ... but ultimately took matters into their own hands.

11/17/18
"SHUT THE F**K UP"
@carson_landes

Originally Published -- 12/3/2018 7:03 AM PST

Kevin Durant Cusses Out Mavericks Fans ... Over 'Cupcake' Insults

Exclusive Details 11/17/18
"SHUT THE F**K UP"
@carson_landes

11/20 -- The NBA has fined Kevin Durant $25,000 for "directing inappropriate language toward a fan"

2:38 PM PT -- Another witness tells TMZ Sports ... the hecklers had been bombarding KD with the "cupcake" insults to the point where it became unbearable.

That witness tells us KD complained to the refs at one point but the fans were not removed or disciplined in any way.

The witness says KD's explicit outburst was completely justified.

Kevin Durant went off on a heckler who was sitting courtside at the Mavs game this weekend -- telling the guy, "Watch the f**king game and shut the f**k up."

It all went down during the 1st quarter of the Warriors vs. Mavs game in Dallas on Saturday.

One witness who was sitting in spitting distance from the incident tells us ... the heckler was just saying the typical NBA fan trash talk -- calling KD names like, "Cupcake" and other insults.

But, KD wasn't having it -- walking over to the group, leaning in ... and cussing the guys out.

Did Durant's warning work? Nope.

We're told the group laughed off the incident because they knew they got to him and ramped up the trash talk even more for the rest of the game.

Ultimately, the Mavs BEAT the Warriors 112 to 109 ... with KD dropping 32 points.

It ain't the first time KD's had to deal with hecklers -- he got into it with some trash talkers back in June and was held back when the guys shouted out that his alma mater (University of Texas) is "butt."

JUNE 2018
WHAT DID YOU SAY?
TMZSports.com

Originally Published -- 11/19/2018 1:46 PM PST

Dallas Mavericks Hooking Up 120 Wounded Soldiers ... With Courtside Seats

Exclusive Details

The Mavs are goin' ALL OUT to honor wounded U.S. troops Wednesday night ... 'cause they're flying in 120 soldiers and hookin' them up with courtside seats AND a fancy 4-course meal!!

The team announced it'll host its 14th annual Seats for Soldiers night ... and give away floor tix for the soldiers -- valued at around $350k.

"Our annual Seats for Soldiers night is a reminder that we don’t get to enjoy the game we love without the incredible sacrifices our soldiers make,” owner Mark Cuban says.

The team says the night will start with a truckload of food at Nick & Sam's in Dallas ... where they'll feed the troops a baller steak dinner (dessert's a 7-layer cake).

Then, it'll be off to the American Airlines Center ... where Cuban will hook up the men and women with some amazing seats for their tilt with the Utah Jazz.

In addition to the wounded troops sitting courtside, the Mavs tell us they're also hooking up over 1,000 veterans with free tickets to the game.

“This game is one small way for the Dallas Mavericks and our season ticket holders to say ‘Thank You,’" Cuban says ... "and acknowledge the bravery of the men and women in uniform.”

Dirk Nowitzki I'm Not Eyeing Other NBA Teams ... 'Mavs for Life'

EXCLUSIVE
MAVS ALL DAY!
TMZSports.com

Dirk Nowitzki is a free agent ... but the 40-year-old legend tells TMZ Sports when it comes to the NBA, it's "Mavs for life."

Dirk and the Dallas Mavericks have already mutually agreed to opt out of Nowitzki's contract -- which included a $5 million option.

The team is expected to sign a new, cheaper deal with Dirk -- unless he decided to explore other NBA options.

But, when we spoke with Dirk on the way out of Craig's in West Hollywood over the weekend -- he seemingly shut down all other teams ... and let us know he's riding with Mark Cuban to the end!

By the way, if Dirk does play another year in Dallas, it would make it the LONGEST run any single NBA player had with any team -- 21 SEASONS -- beating out Kobe Bryant, who played 20 with the Lakers.

Mark Cuban Worst Day Ever Fined $600k for Tanking

Breaking News

Mark Cuban was just fined $600k by the NBA for openly admitting to tanking ... less than 24 hours after a bombshell report was released exposing "predatory sexual behavior" in the Mavs' workplace.

"Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has been fined $600,000 for public statements detrimental to the NBA," the league said in a statement.

Cuban made his tanking comments on Dr. J's podcast earlier this week, saying -- "I'm probably not supposed to say this, but I just had dinner with a bunch of our guys the other night ... and I said, 'Look, losing is our best option.'"

The fine's chump change for a billionaire like Cuban ... but the timing couldn't be worse.

Sports Illustrated published an article Tuesday night alleging crude sexual harassment on the part of former Mavs president and CEO Terdema Ussery. The article also claims a former writer for the Mavs' website kept his job despite committing multiple acts of domestic assault.

Both employees -- as well as the Mavs' head of HR -- are no longer with the team ... and Cuban has since hired an independent law firm to investigate.

Mark Cuban Defended By 'Shark Tank' Partner ... 'No Problems Here'

EXCLUSIVE
HE'S A GOOD GUY
TMZSports.com

One of Mark Cuban's "Shark Tank" business partners says the billionaire always acted like a consummate pro with her ... and she'd be SHOCKED if he really did know about the horrible things happening with the Dallas Mavs.

We spoke with Raven Thomas who got Mark to invest in her gourmet food business -- The Painted Pretzel -- during a 2012 episode of "Shark Tank."

Thomas had nothing but positive things to say about her 6-year work relationship with Cuban -- and says he's always been a respectful partner and honorable business owner.

In fact, Thomas says she was "shocked" by the allegations that the Mavs' front office was a nightmare for women ... saying, "I would be surprised, shocked if he had any knowledge of this and didn't do anything about it."

Thomas says she's also spoken with other people who work with Mark and has not heard anything negative about their experiences.

"I have not heard one other entrepreneur say they've had a problem with [Mark] at all."

Mavericks Owner Mark Cuban 'Embarrassed' After Report Slams Team Office 'Corrosive, Misogynistic'

Breaking News

Mark Cuban says he's already begun firing and suspending Dallas Mavericks front office employees over a Sports Illustrated article that paints the company as a nightmare place for female employees.

The article came out late Tuesday and contains quotes from several current and former female employees who say they experienced sexual harassment and "predatory sexual behavior" while working with the Mavs.

Among the allegations in the article ... former Mavericks president and CEO Terdema Ussery allegedly told one female employee, "You're going to get gang-banged, aren't you?"

When the woman told Ussery she was actually going to the movies with friends he replied, "No, you're definitely getting gang-banged." Terdema has denied the allegations.

Another claim from the article ... a former Mavs website writer committed multiple acts of domestic assault, including against a female employee he was dating.

Both employees -- Ussery and the writer are no longer with the team.

Cuban has essentially said he didn't know about the alleged incidents -- claiming he would speak with his head of human resources and was assured he didn't have a problem in the Mavs organization.

When he learned of the incidents via the Sports Illustrated reporters, Cuban says he immediately took action -- hiring an independent law firm to investigate and a 3rd party company to handle harassment complaints.

Cuban says he's also fired his head of H.R.

"I want to deal with this issue," Cuban told SI ... adding, "There's a problem in the Mavericks organization and we've got to fix it."

He later said the team is bringing in "experts" to educate his staff and will offer a hotline for "counseling and support services as well as personalized services and in depth training for all employees and related staff, including myself."