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Photo illustration by Monica Nickelsburg.

We’ve been waiting since October for this. On Saturday at 12:30 p.m. PT, the Los Angeles Clippers will face off against the Dallas Mavericks in a matchup between two of the hottest Western Conference teams.

But, as tech journalists, implications in the NBA standings is not really why we’re interested in this game. Nope.

Rather, we’re excited to see how two of the most outrageous and passionate NBA owners — both known for their bombastic displays of emotion — face off on the hard court from their courtside seats. Yep, it’s time for Steve Ballmer of the Clips versus Mark Cuban of the Mavs in what could turn out to be a classic rivalry between two successful businessmen who own NBA franchises.

Both geeks are expected to be in attendance. To get ready for the showdown, we decided to put together a little comparison of the tech billionaires. Who do you think will win?

Ballmer with Clippers star Blake Griffin. Photo via L.A. Clippers.
Ballmer with Clippers star Blake Griffin. Photo via L.A. Clippers.

Steve “Monkey Boy” Ballmer

Birthplace: Detroit in 1956.

Education: A.B. in applied mathematics and economics from Harvard University.

First job out of college: Procter & Gamble dessert maker salesman.

Tech claim to fame: Named CEO of Microsoft in 2000, growing revenue from $25 billion to $70 billion during his tenure.

Attire: Button down with sweater and slacks.

Dancing experience: The infamous Monkey Boy dance, and this more recent yet-to-be-named jig:

NBA team purchase price: $2 billion in 2014.

NBA team record in 2015: 24-12, 2nd in Pacific Division.

Winning percentage since owning the team: 67 percent.

Legendary tantrum: Chair throwing over employee departures.

Net worth: $22.7 billion, No. 21 on Forbes 400 list.

Twitter followers: 6,274 at @SteveBMicrosoft.

Basketball quote: “I love basketball. No, I never really played. I basically got cut from the freshman team. But I love basketball. I was a heck of a good statistician for my college team, but I can’t play a lick.”

Legal troubles: Microsoft antitrust investigation.

Best basketball press conference:


Mark Cuban Photo: Wikipedia
Mark Cuban. Photo: Wikipedia

Mark “Cubes” Cuban 

Birthplace: Pittsburgh in 1958.

Education: B.S. in Business Administration from Indiana University.

First job out of college: Bartender.

Tech claim to fame: Sold to Yahoo for $5.7 billion in 1999.

Dancing experience: Dancing With The Stars.


NBA team purchase: $285 million in 2000.

NBA team record in 2015: 26-11.

Winning percentage since owning team: 66 percent.

Legendary tantrum: Throwing a Gatorade jug cover during a Mavs game.

Net worth: $2.7 billion, No. 237 on Forbes 400 list.

Twitter followers: 2.63 million at @mcuban.

Basketball quote: “Steve (Ballmer) can come in and be Steve. I’ve paved the way for him. He’s in a great spot, but I hope he f**** up.”

Legal troubles: Numerous fines by the NBA.

Best basketball press conference:

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