Thursday, May 8, 2008

Mav Or Not a Mav?

The Mavs have a long vacation yet again to think things over, but one question arises...who will even be a part of this team next year? Cuban guarantees that the Mavs "core" consists of the German, J-Ho, J Kidd, and "The Animal" Brandon Bass. That leaves Jet, Damp, and Stack all in a group I call the "Players We Really Don't Want to Trade But Hey...We'll listen." I really can't see Damp, Stack, or Terry leaving with their massive contracts. So who is left? Who will be back? Who do we want back? Who can we sign? Cuban has a lot to think about, but don't worry. I'm here to sort it out folks....

Free agents for the off-season that are currently Mavericks: J.J. Barea (restricted), Malik Allen, Devean George, Eddie Jones, Juwan Howard, Tyronn Lue, Jamaal Magloire, and Antoine Wright.

Let's first start with the Little Latino (hey, I like that!). Barea is a restricted free agent, so any offer by another team can first be matched by Cuban. I can't see any teams going above and beyond to have a bidding war against the Mavs for this guy. The team needs a 3rd string point guard in case the first team bus explodes on the way to a game and they need the Little Latino to step up. So I will say for Barea: MAV

That brings us to the next point guard on the free agency list...Tyronn Lue. Lue played pretty consistently well off the bench for the Mavs, and it ended up being a smart pickup. There is just one problem...Dallas wants to pick up a backup point guard from somewhere around the league. If they do this, Lue is gone. If they don't, then either Lue stays or else it's Little Latino time. So until I hear otherwise....

You want to hear something pointless? Dallas says they need a backup center so they go snooping around for one. New Jersey drops Magloire and look at that...a center! Dallas picks him up and then doesn't use him! This might be because Bass played so well off the bench, Malik Allen was usually behind Bass, or just because Avery doesn't play centers. If he didn't play last year, why should he now? Especially with a new backup center on his way (foreshadow alert!). So for Jamaal, it's bye bye.

Supposed to be just a throw-in player in the Jason Kidd deal, Malik Allen showed Dallas fans that he has some qualities. A good jump shot, good hustle, and good rebounding. Unfortunately, there is another player on the Mavs that does all those things a lot better, is younger, and goes by the nickname "The Animal." There is just no room on this team for a homeless man's Bass....

Devean George, what can we say about you? Let's start with the positives. You shook my hand at the mall, You play great defense, you can hit the perimeter shot, you don't mind driving to the basket, and you seem happy to be a Maverick. Now the negatives: You refused to say hi to my fellow blogger Patrick, sometimes you cannot hit a perimeter shot to save your life, you boycott trades, and sometimes I really don't know what you are doing out there. I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that those Early Bird rights are going to come in handy...

I am going to throw Eddie Jones and Juwan Howard together for this one. They both provide nothing to the team, and I really don't know why they were ever in the game. The Mavs traded Juwan Howard for DJ Mbenga. Oh how I wish we still had DJ! Eddie Jones was picked up in the free agency, and that's exactly where he belongs. They were both only good for one thing...they were both enthusiastic on the bench. Unfortunately for them, this isn't the YMCA.

This next guy is a tough call. Antoine Wright played pretty well when he was put into the game, but half of the season he wasn't even activated by Avery Johnson. It's hard to tell whether Cuban has seen enough out of the ex-Aggie to save him from the depths of free agent hell. I'm going to roll a dice on this one....ok, I'll flip a coin.

So if the Mavs have Barea, Wright, and George all re-signed...what about all those empty spots? Let the madness begin!

DeSagana Diop is a free agent and has just admitted that he has Mavs fever. Good news there, I would love to get the big man back. If he returns, then the Kidd trade looks a lot better...right? RIGHT?! Oh Devin, come back to us!!!

Another ex-Mav that Cuban has his eye on is none other than Eddie Najera. Not only was he a crowd favorite in Dallas, he can now shoot the perimeter shot! One more thing, when Shaq falls on him he doesn't even complain! For the first time ever, I think Dallas needs another Mexican!

Dallas has 5.4 million dollars to spend on some free agent acquisitions. Sources inside the Mavs headquarters have let two names slip out: Mickael Pietrus from the Warriors and C.J. Miles from Utah. Both are shooting guards which the Mavs want, and C.J. is a Dallas native. I can really see Cuban convincing C.J. to come back to Texas, where the weather is better and there is no Mormon infestation. Either one of those players could be a starter and put Jet right back into 6th man territory.

All those things are possible without pulling the trigger on a trade involving Jet or Howard. While Howard had a dreadful series against the Hornets and made some dumb confessions, he is still the Mav's second best player and is a key to this franchise's success. Terry is probably the most positive person in the NBA. He not only only has a great attitude, he can get the crowd into a game and is loved by everyone within the organization.

These Mavericks will be just fine...all that is needed are a couple sparks off the bench and a new coaching strategy that gets this team back on track. Go do work Rick Carlisle, go do work!


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