The NBA announced late Monday that Joe Tsai, the Nets minority owner, had been fined $35,000 for making public comments “detrimental to the NBA,” a reference to Tsai’s Sunday tweet offering support to his GM, Sean Marks. Marks himself had been fined and suspended for visiting the refs’ locker room following the Nets loss in Game 4 of the playoffs.
My partners and I have spoken and the entire Nets ownership group support our GM Sean Marks for protesting the wrong calls and missed calls. NBA rules are rules and we respect that, but our players and fans expect things to be fair.— Joe Tsai (@joetsai1999) April 22, 2019
It was the third fine levied against the Nets in two days. Marks was fined $25,000 —and suspended for one game — Sunday afternoon for protesting refs’ calls in the 76ers series, which he believed threatened the safety of his players. Later Sunday, Jared Dudley was fined another $25,000 for his role in the altercation between Nets and 76ers players in the third quarter of Saturday’s game. The Sixers’ Jimmy Butler was fined $15,000 for his role. Both were also ejected.
Before the announcement, Nets players had voiced their gratitude for Marks actions and Tsai’s tweet.
According to Adrian Wojnarowski, Marks was specifically upset with the refs refusal to levy anything harsher than a Flagrant 1 against Joel Embiid for his fouls on Nets center Jarrett Allen.
Tsai, a Taiwanese-Canadian businessman, bought 49 percent of the Nets from Nets longtime owner, Mikhail Prokhorov, a year ago for a reported price of more than $1.1 billion with an option to take control of the Nets and its G League franchise in 2021.
The co-founder and executive vice-chairman of Alibaba, the huge Chinese e-commerce company, followed that up earlier this year with the purchase of the WNBA’s New York Liberty. There are also reports that he may accelerate his purchase of control of the Nets and purchase both Barclays Center and Nassau Coliseum from Prokhorov.
Tsai is also a member of the board of directors of NBA China, appointed by Adam Silver, the man who fined him Monday.
Tsai’s fine amounts of about 3/10,000ths of one percent of his net worth, which Bloomberg Business estimated at $11.2 billion as of Monday morning. That’s up $2.5 billion year to date.
Meanwhile, Brian Windhorst of ESPN had a different take on the Marks visit to the refs locker room. calling it “unacceptable” and “disturbing.”
On the other hand, Earl Watson, former NBA coach and player, tweeted a different opinion.
Players want to play for a leader like Sean Marks! #promisethat— Earl J Watson (@Earl_Watson) April 21, 2019
- Nets minority owner fined $35,000 for tweet about NBA refs - AP
- Nets owner fined $35K for tweet - New York Daily News
- Kenny Atkinson thrilled by GM Sean Marks’ show of support - Greg Logan - Newsday
- Nets’ Jared Dudley happy to have support of team leadership in role as emotional leader - Greg Logan - Newsday
- Sean Marks’ eruption was aimed at more than just these Nets - Brian Lewis - New York Post
- NBA fines Nets GM Sean Marks and owner Joe Tsai for actions following Game 4 loss to 76ers - Michael Kaskey-Blomain & Jack Maloney