Mark Cuban is a Jerry Jones fan and is more than happy to see the longtime Dallas Cowboys owner being recognized as a Hall of Famer later this summer.
Cuban, the outspoken owner of the Dallas Mavericks, made his admiration for Jones known when he went through the process of purchasing the Mavericks for $285 million from H. Ross Perot Jr. in January 2000.
At the time, it was the most spent for a professional sports franchise. The NBA also had prospective owners interview with other league executives.
“There was one — the general manager or the president of the Knicks at the time — he kept on saying, ‘Are you going to be like that other owner in Dallas?’ ” Cuban recalled. “I’m like, ‘I hope so.’ This was when Jerry was [ticking] everybody off and doing these deals with Pepsi and everything. And, [the Knicks exec] said, ‘Well, I don’t know if we like that.’
$140 millionPrice Jerry Jones paid for the Cowboys in 1989
“I’m like, ‘How about them three Super Bowls?’ So I’m excited for him and the whole family ’cause I know he’s not just going in for himself, he’s going in for the whole Jones family.”
Jones bought the Cowboys in February 1989 for $140 million, a figure at the time most people felt was way too high. But, as Cuban alluded to, Jones has turned the Cowboys into an organization that is now valued at $4 billion by Forbes.
Cuban has had similar success with the Mavericks, who are now valued at more than $1 billion.
Jones and Cuban worked together to bring the 2010 NBA All-Star Game to Cowboys Stadium in Arlington. That venture set the attendance record for the game with 108,713.
“I just love Jerry,” Cuban said. “When I bought the team, he reached out to me. Remember that I paid the most for any professional sports team ever. He said, ‘Mark, anytime anybody ever told me I overpaid, it always turned out to be a good deal. You’re going to do great. I’m like, ‘Thanks Jerry.’
I just love Jerry.
Mavs owner Mark Cuban
“Hopefully I emulate all of this. Jerry had two goals — one, to be successful in business and he knew how to sell, and two, to win. When you’re trying to be successful, usually someone is not going to take kindly to the way you do it.
“Jerry has always been a great salesperson and he’s always set the example that if you want to be successful it doesn’t hurt to eat, sleep and breathe your company and he’s done that. He does that to this day.
“When you go to the Pope and you’re presenting a jersey? I mean, I don’t know if I’d present a Dirk [Nowitzki] jersey or whatever to the Pope. That’s Jerry. I think it’s amazing. He’s earned every bit of it and he’s set the tone and he’s earned it.”
Jones will be enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Aug. 5 in Canton, Ohio.
As far as his own Hall of Fame credentials, Cuban laughed it off.
“If there’s a corner of the Hall of Fame that says, ‘Fines,’ ” Cuban said, referring to his penchant to rile up the NBA office.
“They’re going to have my checkbook in it.”