Mark Cuban Gets the NBA’s Offseason Party Started

The Maverick(s) owner put his money where his moves were, signing Chandler Parsons and celebrating in a Florida nightclub.

Mark Cuban knows how to recruit. The tech billionaire turned most-interesting owner in the NBA offered Chandler Parsons, the restricted free-agent forward for the Houston Rockets, a three-year deal worth over $45 million on Wednesday while the two partied in a Florida nightclub. The offer comes at a difficult time for the Rockets. If they match it to keep Parsons, which they can contractually do, the cost of keeping the 25-year-old star from moving down Interstate 45 will prevent them from making Chris Bosh the max offer they’ve already floated. Cuban’s night out probably represents the end of Parson’s career in Houston, but it definitively ends the tentative toe-dipping that has defined the NBA offseason.

By making Parson’s an offer he doesn’t want to refuse, Cuban has done what he does best: push the envelope. In this case, he’s pushed said envelope into the first domino in a long chain. Does Cuban know what will ultimately happen? No, he doesn’t, but he wasn’t content to sit back and talk about the price of postage. After a season defined by Donald Sterling’s bad behavior and other owners’ complete lack of behavior, NBA fans should applaud Cuban’s combative spirit. He’s hitting the town instead of sitting by the phone waiting for Lebron or Melo to call.

In the photos Cuban posted to Cyber Dust, a messaging startup he invested in and helped launch earlier this year, he and Parsons look to be having a good time. The same can be said of the picture Parson’s mom posted to Twitter. That’s great. They’re creating headaches for not just the Rockets, but the Heat, the Cavs, and maybe even the Celtics, teams looking to be aggressive in the offseason. Here’s the thing: If those teams really wanted to be aggressive, they should have taken a page from Cuban and actually been aggressive. Now they’re playing defense.

A night out in Florida has started something. Maybe it’s the dawn of the Cyber Dust age; maybe its the resurgence of the Mavs; maybe it’s a dizzying number of roster moves. Honestly, we’re just happy to see some action. The season is over. Let the games begin.