The Dallas Mavericks and Owner Mark Cuban went into this NBA offseason ready to go all-in for Deron Williams. They have known for a while that they need a second, younger star to pair with Dirk Nowitzki as he ages. However, the Nets improved their roster enough with the re-signing of Gerald Wallace and the trade for Joe Johnson that Williams spurned the Mavericks to re-sign with the Nets.
Things changed drastically for the Mavericks and Cuban after this. With no other top tier free agents on the market this season, the Mavericks realized they had to start building their team a different way. They added Chris Kaman at center, a former All-Star that proved he can still play late last season for the Hornets, on a one-year deal. They also claimed another former Clippers All-Star, Elton Brand off amnesty waivers on a one-year deal. Both of these guys improve the Mavericks frontline while giving them solid financial flexibility next offseason as well. However, Bill Simmons doesn’t agree:
Whether you agree or disagree with Simmons assessment of the Mavs big man moves this offseason, they real gem of their offseason was acquiring a cheaply signed Darren Collison from the Pacers to be their starting point guard. It cost them basically just Ian Mahinmi and gives them a point guard of the future that looked good filling in for Chris Paul in New Orleans as well as in inconsistent minutes in Indiana last year. The Mavericks have greatly improved their team heading into this season, all while maintaining the financial flexibility to make a run at Dwight Howard and/or Chris Paul this time next season. And don’t be surprised if Mark Cuban pulls something like that off.