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The Buffalo News (New York)
Results of a seven-month investigation of the Dallas Mavericks organization released on Wednesday confirm "numerous instances of sexual harassment and other improper workplace conduct" spanning more than 20 years.
Allegations came to light in an explosive Feb. 20 Sports Illustrated story and were further detailed through reporting by The Dallas Morning News.
The investigation cited no wrongdoing by Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, but Cuban, due to what the investigation and the NBA termed "institutional and other failures," agreed to contribute $10 million to organizations committed to supporting the leadership and development of women in the sports industry and combating domestic violence.
There will be no basketball-related penalties as a result of the investigation.
During an at-times tearful interview that aired Wednesday on ESPN, Cuban apologized to the women who had been victimized during his 18-year ownership tenure.
"To the women involved, and the women who were in a couple of case assaulted," Cuban said. "Not just to them, but to their families. Because this is not just something that's an incident and then it's over. It stays with people and it stays with families.
"I'm just sorry I didn't see it. I'm sorry I didn't recognize it. I just hope that out of this we'll be better and we can avoid it and we can help make everybody just smarter about the whole thing."
The investigation, conducted by Mavericks-hired investigators Anne Milgram and Evan Krutoy and Krutoy Law, reached these conclusions, among others:
· Improper workplace conduct toward 15 female employees by former Mavericks president Terdema Ussery. Those incidents, the report stated, included "inappropriate comments, touching, and forcible kissing."
· Improper workplace conduct by former Mavericks ticket sales executive Chris Hyde.
The report concluded that Hyde made "inappropriate comments to women of a sexual nature," viewed and shared pornographic images and videos and made unwanted sexual advances and violent and threatening outbursts toward co-workers.
· Confirmed two acts of domestic violence by former Mavs.com reporter Earl Sneed, including one against a team employee.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver commended the Mavericks organization for the sweeping cultural and structural changes that have been made during the past seven months under CEO Cynthia Marshall, but Silver also called the investigations findings "disturbing and heartbreaking."
"No employee in the NBA, or any workplace for that matter, should be subject to the type of working environment described in the report," Silver said.
Butler wants out
A week before the start of training camp, Minnesota Timberwolves guard Jimmy Butler reportedly has requested a trade. The four-time All-Star informed coach Tom Thibodeau of his wishes on Tuesday, according to a report on Wednesday from The Athletic.
The Athletic's sources said that Butler, 29, gave the Timberwolves a list of teams he'd consider signing with for the long term.
According to ESPN, those teams are the Brooklyn Nets, New York Knicks and Los Angeles Clippers.
Butler joined Minnesota in a trade with the Chicago Bulls in June 2017. He played in 59 games for the Timberwolves last season, averaging 22.2 points, 5.3 rebounds, 4.9 assists and 2.0 steals per game.
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