Countdown: Ranking the Mavs - No. 15
With the NBA lockout paralyzing all league business at a time when teams would normally be signing and re-signing free agents and making trades to set their 2011-12 rosters, I offer you my ranking and analysis of the world champion's roster, as is. Whenever the lockout ends and teams get back to daily business, the Mavs' roster will look a bit different. The core is likely to remain intact. Others will have to go, and if Mark Cuban and Donnie Nelson are offered the right deal for either a player at a position of need or to take a big contract off their hands (i.e. Brendan Haywood), a trade is always possible.
So as the heat melts North Texas and the lockout freezes the NBA, let's continue as I rank the 16 players -- one each day -- currently on the Mavs' 15-man roster in order from least critical to most critical for a title defense.
Today's ranking: No. 15
Experience: 13 years
Contract status: Free agnt
2010-11 salary: $402,065 (pro-rated after signing with Mavs on Jan. 25)
His outlook: It could be argued that Stojakovic, who said after the season that he is not contemplating retirement, should have led off this countdown at No. 16 (but, someone please tell me where DeShawn Stevenson fits with Rudy Fernandez, Jason Terry, Rodrigue Beaubois and Dominique Jones guaranteed roster spots -- therefore he became my automatic No. 16). Mavs president of basketball operations Donnie Nelson loves pure shooters and accomplished veterans. Stojakovic's skills have clearly deteriorated and injury is always a concern, but he can still shoot the rock. If the Mavs have a roster spot open, don't be terribly surprised if they look to sign Stojakovic for the minimum and use him as a spot, 3-point specialist. Small forward is clearly unsettled at the moment with Butler coming off major knee surgery as well as being a free agent. Shawn Marion can start or come off the bench and Dallas would obviously love for springy Corey Brewer to become a rotation player. Odds are Stojakovic won't be back, but if Butler does not re-sign it could crack open the door for a return.
Thursday: No. 16 DeShawn Stevenson
Today: No. 15 Peja Stojakovic
Monday: No. 14
103.3 FM ESPN PODCASTS
Play Podcast Dallas Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett at Mavericks media day to discuss his expectations for the upcoming season.
Play Podcast Mark Cuban joins Galloway and Company to discuss the Mavericks' new GM Gersson Rosas and much more.
Play Podcast Fitzsimmons and Durrett discuss Mark Cuban's comments from Las Vegas about the Mavericks' offseason, how he sees the team without Dwight Howard and more.
Play Podcast Marc Stein joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why the Mavericks didn't want to match Cleveland's offer to Andrew Bynum, what's next for the Mavs and the possibility of Dirk Nowitzki ending his career elsewhere.
Play Podcast Jeff Platt fires quick-hitters at Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon in the weekly sports standoff about Andrew Bynum, the Mavs' current backcourt, a potential Nelson Cruz suspension and more.
Play Podcast ESPN Los Angeles' Ramona Shelburne joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why she thinks Andrew Bynum got a bad rap in Los Angeles and how he would fit in with the Mavericks.
Play Podcast Buy, sell or hold? If Dwight Howard goes to another team, what are the Mavs' options? The guys take a look at a list of potential fallback options.
Play Podcast ESPN's Marc Stein joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to discuss the latest news on the Mavericks' meeting with Dwight Howard.