Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban recently rejected a product proposed to him on an episode of Shark Tank after the founders of an air freshener company made the mistake of giving Cuban a sample of their product that had the Golden State Warriors' logo.
Cuban was part of a panel fielding a pitch from Ride FRSH, a Los Angeles-based company that produces air fresheners, when he was given a Warriors edition of the company's product despite the Mavericks' having been beaten by the Warriors in the 2022 Western Conference Finals. Cuban quickly declared himself out of the deal, ripping the founders of Ride FRSH for what he called the "dumbest marketing move ever".
"Seriously, you've got to read the room," Cuban said. "Wrong move, wrong time. … The one air freshener from the NBA is the team that beats us in the NBA Conference Finals. You've got to know that that could backfire."
Cuban was called out by his co-hosts, with Barbara Corcoran telling the Mavericks owner that he's a "bigger man than that". Cuban responded that "I could be, but I'm not."
Fortunately for the founders of Ride FRSH, the gaffe with the product that Cuban received did not end up tanking the deal: According to CNBC, Corcoran ended up offering $200,000 for 25 percent of the company contingent on pending retail partnerships becoming official. The founders would later apologize to Cuban, an apology which he accepted.
Cuban receiving a Warriors-branded product struck a nerve in large part because the Warriors managed to spoil what had been the Mavericks' most successful season since their 2011 NBA Championship triumph. The Mavericks defeated the Utah Jazz and Phoenix Suns on a run to the Western Conference Finals, but they were soundly beaten by the Warriors 4-1 in the next round.