The Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday disputed multiple details of a Sports Illustrated report alleging that director of player personnel Tony Ronzone sexually assaulted and harassed a woman in July 2019.
"The Mavs take all allegations of sexual assault extremely seriously and reminded SI of the zero-tolerance policy put in place in March of 2018 that includes zero-tolerance of misconduct of any kind such as sexual assault, sexual harassment, bullying, false allegations, etc.," a lengthy statement released to the Dallas Morning News' Brad Townsend read.
The Mavericks were the focus of an independent investigation in 2018 after multiple allegations of internal sexual harassment and other inappropriate workplace conduct, including accusations against former team president Terdema Ussery that the investigation substantiated. Cuban apologized in the wake of the scandal and pledged $10 million to women's advocacy groups.
An unidentified woman told Sports Illustrated's Jessica Luther and Jon Wertheim that Ronzone sexually assaulted her during Las Vegas Summer League in July 2019.
The woman emailed Mavs owner Mark Cuban about the incident in September, according to Sports Illustrated, and he apparently forwarded the email to Cynthia Wales, whom the Mavs hired as chief ethics and compliance officer following the 2018 investigation. According to emails, the woman's lawyers offered the Mavericks access to sworn statements from people she'd told about her experience with Ronzone, contingent on a nondisclosure agreement.
Lawyers representing the Mavericks told Sports lllustrated that the woman and her attorneys refused to provide declarations to the team unless certain conditions were agreed upon.
The Mavericks internally investigated the woman's account and confirmed the investigation is currently closed.
"The Mavs, in pursuit of truth since the allegations were first made in September 2019, are appalled that Sports Illustrated reported a story, knowing the Mavs were not provided all of the purported evidence," the team said in Wednesday's release.
The team also said it had cooperated with Sports Illustrated's reporting and the story omitted or mischaracterized important details.