The Dallas Mavericks, once again, are offering a promotional class designed to help women learn about the nuances of basketball. Y’know, the sort of knowledge that us boys weren’t allowed to graduate kindergarten without, apparently.
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The tweet announcing the “program” (?) is as gnarly as you’d expect:
Hey, girl. Hey. Take off your headphones and let’s patronize it up, #MFFL-style!
NBA 101 for women is an annual event hosted by Mavs players, coaches and staff. It’s an opportunity for women to learn and understand the fundamentals of basketball in a fun, light and interactive atmosphere.
This women-only event, held at American Airlines Center practice court and locker room, provides basic instruction on topics including offensive and defensive sets, coaching strategy, as well as a Q&A session with a player and behind the scenes information about workouts and life on the road.
The event will also include a cash bar, and it will be sponsored by “Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers!”
The appropriate reaction hit almost immediately:
Mavs owner Mark Cuban took a break from addressing former-buddy and current Republican Party nominee for President Donald Trump’s speech from Mexico on Wednesday to answer a few questions about the infuriating way this was promoted, or piled together:
People can use “101” classes to their benefit. People like, at times, Mark Cuban, the minds behind this event, and the Dallas Mavericks’ social media chief that signed off on this tweet.
There are entry-level cooking classes. Entry-level classes for sketching, playing the piano, speaking a new language, or learning how to do ‘The Hustle.’ Cuban, you’ll recall, helped work his way through college by specializing in teaching the final class on that particular list of examples.
There’s no shame in gearing up a “101” promotion for those that want to learn about the game, those hoping to potentially become fans of an enterprise that engenders civic pride while consistently (since Mark Cuban purchased control of the team) just about guaranteeing a great night out.
To those of us that grew up only obsessing over basketball, baseball and football with the odd dip into hockey, boxing, golf, racing or tennis, some “101” classes set to explain MMA fighting or E-Sports would still probably go a long way toward future fandom. And if the Mavs made this event and advertisement irrespective of gender or patronizing pandering (“hey, girl … hey?”), this could be a hit. These sorts of classes, in the formation stage, are a great idea.
(Save for the “cash bar” part.)
This version still remains condescending and wrong in ways that just about betray belief, especially in 2016. The Mavericks might value potential “customers” over “PC,” but in making this female-only and presuming that just one gender needs this sort of first step program, apparently they sure don’t think a hell of a lot of those potential “customers.”
If this tweet and advertisement are in any way representative of the program itself, the Mavs appear to think these future customers are merely walking purses with open checkbooks, gross cooties, and super-weird chromosomal setups. Bit of a whiff there, Dallas Mavericks.
(That’s a baseball reference, Mavboys. Looks like you got stuck without the balls or the bat in this one.)
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