Dallas Mavericks

Cuban not sure if new practice facility will be ready in time for training camp

LAKE HIGHLANDS -- When the Dallas Mavericks are on an extended road trip during the season, they often wind up practicing in the other team’s practice facilities.

And from the looks of those facilities, the Mavs’ practice facility that’s located in the bowels of American Airlines Center is woefully outdated.

Thus, in order to get his team back up to the high standards he covets, owner Mark Cuban recently purchased nearly 14 acres of land located in the Dallas Design District across from AAC on Stemmons Freeway and Inspiration Drive. Cuban plans to renovate the building and use it for a temporary practice facility, and also redevelop the land for a permanent mix-used facility that will likely include the Mavs’ practice site, a museum, public café, team store and a theater.

HKS, the same architect who designed the Dallas Cowboys’ AT&T Stadium in Arlington, is working with Cuban on this project.

"It’s going to be amazing,’’ Cuban said on Tuesday. "It’s really a three-step process.

"We’ve got about a little bit under 100,000 square feet that we’re going to renovate now.’’

Cuban is unsure if the first step will be completed in order for the Mavs to house their training camp in the new digs this fall.

"I’m not committing yet to having training camp there (this fall),’’ Cuban said. "We’ll have to make sure I get this done and working, but the first thing is to put in a couple of floors, put in facilities, make it comfortable for the guys.’’

In other words, Cuban is planning on building something that will make the Mavs the envy of the other 29 NBA teams. And instead of just one practice court the Mavs currently have at AAC, the new facility will have two practice courts.

"We’ve got almost 14 acres, so we’ll do the first building there,’’ Cuban said. "I hope it’s going to be a six- or seven-story building to help replace what we’re doing now, and be a much higher-end practice facility that is built for medical specifications, hospital specifications, and will do a lot more.’’

Cuban said he didn’t ask the city of Dallas for any money to keep the Mavs’ practice facility in Dallas. But without mentioning names, he said he did receive offers to move the Mavs’ practice facilities to the suburbs.

"In terms of my negotiations with the city and playing off one principality or one city against the next, it didn’t happen,’’ Cuban said. "I didn’t ask for a penny, I didn’t want a penny.

"I didn’t hold anybody hostage and say, ‘Look, so and so has offered me land.’ But I was offered land. Or (did I say) ‘this city or this principality offered to do A, B or C.’ None of that whatsoever.’’

Because of the fair way he said he’s been treated since purchasing the Mavs on Jan. 4, 2000, Cuban wasn’t about to make threats about moving the practice facility out of Dallas.

"I’ve said it many times, there’s a time that for that type of thing, but in this particular case I feel like I owe the city of Dallas more than they owe me,’’ Cuban said. "When the Mavs won (the NBA title) five years ago, for the parade, I literally wrote checks that just went to the treasury.

"I’m trying to give something back and doing things like this. So you’re not going to see us begging the city for money.’’

What folks will see the Mavs doing is sticking their chest out with pride once their new practice facility is completed.

Dwain Price: 817-390-7760, @dwainprice

Dwain Price can be heard every Wednesday from 3-4 p.m. on dfwiradio.com