Mavericks owner’s sibling explores addiction, recovery in new novel
Brian Cuban and his two brothers are so close they live within walking distance from each other.
But being related to one of Preston Hollow’s most famous entrepreneurs isn’t always as satisfying as a courtside seat during a Dallas Maverick’s victory or scoring an investment on an episode of Shark Tank.
“I had no identity of my own,” the attorney and author said, recalling the dark years before entering long-term recovery for alcoholism and drug addiction. “Mark became internationally famous, and it suddenly occurred to me that I hated myself so much that I didn’t want to be me.
“I despised myself. I couldn’t even look in the mirror. So, why not be Mark Cuban’s brother. I can walk into any club in Dallas and not wait in line, and I was dating girls half my age with the relationship driven mostly by drugs.”
Mark became internationally famous, and it suddenly occurred to me that I hated myself so much that I didn’t want to be me.Brian Cuban
That wasn’t a way to live and was nearly a way to die, Brian said. The older of Mark Cuban’s two younger brothers sank to near suicide during the summer of 2005, before finding recovery and building his own identity. April will mark year 15 of Brian Cuban’s recovery from cocaine and alcohol.
Today, he frequently speaks on addiction, legal ethics, recovery, and redemption at colleges, conferences, non-profits, and legal events. His books include memoirs Shattered Image: My Triumph Over Body Dysmorphic Disorder and The Addicted Lawyer: Tales of the Bar, Booze, Blow, and Redemption plus a new novel.
The Ambulance Chaser: A Thriller explores the story of fictional personal injury Pittsburgh lawyer Jas Feldman, an addict who plays hard and fast with the truth and is an addict.
“First and foremost, I am a person in recovery, so it seems natural to write what you know,” Brian said. “It seems natural to give Jason Feldman, the protagonist, those types of qualities. Jason has his struggles, and he doesn’t follow the typical journey with recovery.”
The idea for the novel grew from a recurring dream about growing up with his best friend in Pittsburg and throwing bodies into a bonfire.
“I would wake up disoriented, wondering if I killed someone,” he said. “I asked myself, ‘Why haven’t I been arrested yet?’”
Thinking about the book during a run one day, he decided it should become a novel, one he hopes demonstrates for readers how recovery is never a straight line. “The sequence of our past will eventually come around, whether it is months, years, or like Jason Feldman, decades,” Brian said.
Is sharing that message easier when your brother owns the Dallas Mavericks?
“My books get more noticed,” Brian said. “Do I like that? Of course, I do. It would be disingenuous to say no, but also, my method of recovery gets more noticed, and that’s good too. If someone listens to my story and gets hope because I am Mark Cuban’s brother, why is that bad?”