DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – The Dallas Mavericks put out a preemptive statement on an upcoming Sports Illustrated article Tuesday night.
A short time later, Sports Illustrated tweeted out the article titled, “Exclusive: Inside the Corrosive Workplace Culture of the Dallas Mavericks.”
The Mavericks statement says the article is about a former “officer of the organization engaged in various acts of inappropriate conduct towards women over a period of years.”
The employee left the Mavericks nearly three years ago.
The Sports Illustrated article identified that employee as former team President and CEO, Terdema Ussery.
The Mavericks said they only learned of the scope of these complaints in the past days.
The statement said:
The Mavericks organization takes these allegations extremely seriously. Yesterday we notified the league office and immediately hired outside counsel to conduct a thorough and independent investigation. The investigation will focus on the specific allegations related to this former employee, and will look more broadly at our company’s workplace practices and policies. In addition, an employee whose job was to receive and investigate such complaints and report them accurately and fully, has been suspended pending the conclusion of our investigation.
Sports Illustrated said it interviewed more than a dozen former and current Mavericks employees in different departments in its months-long investigation that paints a picture “of a corporate culture rife with misogyny and predatory sexual behavior.”
The Dallas Mavericks also said they learned that an employee misled the organization about a prior domestic violence incident.
“This employee was not candid about the situation and has been terminated,” the statement read.
The Mavericks did not name any names in their statement, which went on to say:
The Mavericks will provide all necessary resources to ensure that every current and former employee receives appropriate support. We will also conduct comprehensive training through experts and take the necessary steps to ensure that our workplace is a safe, respectful and productive one for all Dallas Mavericks employees.
We are committed — to our employees, our team and our fans — to meet the goals of dignity, security and fairness that define the Dallas Mavericks.
We will not make any further comments until after the completion of the investigation.