At the onset of free agency this offseason, the Miami Heat were well on their way to acquiring star Jimmy Butler. In order to make the money work, they had to tie in a third team to take on some additional contracts.
At first, it appeared as though that was going to be easily taken care of by sending veteran point guard Goran Dragic to the Dallas Mavericks. Before the trade was finalized, however, the Mavs pulled the deal, leaving the Heat to pick up the pieces and find another trade partner.
At the time, some wondered if the move was the latest installment of the rivalry between the Mavs and Heat.
Mavs owner Mark Cuban recently emailed with Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald to set things straight:
“As far as we can tell, it was just miscommunication.”
Jackson further detailed the email correspondence:
“Cuban did not discuss specific players in his email but said ‘I was sitting in the room full of people when the call was discussed and we put the trade we thought was happening on our board. We later discussed trade kickers and added a player to make it work. They obviously thought they heard something else.’
“Cuban said ‘there was absolutely nothing malicious that went on.’”
Cuban was also clear about the fact that the Mavs and the Heat get along great, despite their past rivalry:
“We get along great with the Heat and have done many deals with them. Wires just got crossed somehow.”
Much of the conflict between the Mavs and Heat in the past has been a byproduct of the two teams meeting twice in the NBA Finals, as well as a rivalry between former Mavs stark Dirk Nowitzki and former Heat star Dwyane Wade.
Last season, both Nowitzki and Wade decided to retire from the NBA. It offered the two legends an opportunity to meditate on their time in the league, as well as bury any bad feelings they held towards one another in the past.