National Anthem Plays At Dallas Mavericks Home Game For First Time This Season

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – An instrumental version of the Star-Spangled Banner echoed through the American Airlines Center Wednesday night, Feb. 10.

It was the first time all season the Dallas Mavericks played the national anthem before a home game.

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That fact came to light after the first home game that included fans.

On Tuesday, Mavericks owner Mark Cuban said his team has not played the anthem before home games, so far, this season, as first reported by The Athletic.

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Cuban didn’t explain the decision and said that nobody had noticed.

The NBA issued a statement Wednesday about a “longstanding league policy” regarding the national anthem as fans are making their way back to arenas:

“With NBA teams now in the process of welcoming fans back into their arenas, all teams will play the national anthem in keeping with longstanding league policy.”

Soon after, the Mavericks confirmed they would be playing the anthem starting with Wednesday night’s home game against the Atlanta Hawks.

Cuban issued the following today regarding the national anthem:

“We respect and always have respected the passion people have for the anthem and our country. But we also loudly hear the voices of those who feel that the anthem does not represent them. We feel that their voices need to be respected and heard, because they have not been. Going forward, our hope is that people will take the same passion they have for this issue and apply the same amount of energy to listen to those who feel differently from them. Only then we can move forward and have courageous conversations that move this country forward and find what unites us.”

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As a result of the controversy, Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick announced Senate Bill 4, the Star Spangled Banner Protection Act, he said will be among his legislative priorities this legislative session.

CBS Dallas / Fort Worth