While all eyes will soon be focused on free agency as July 1 draws near, one current Dallas Mavericks player knows he won't be going anywhere when that magic date finally arrives.
Brandan Wright, who quickly became a fan favorite as he earned more and more playing time last season, will be back, not that such news should come as any great surprise. Mavs president of basketball operations Donnie Nelson called exercising the club's team option on Wright for a second season a "formality."
The lanky, super-athletic 6-foot-10 former lottery pick came to Dallas last season as a bargain free agent seeking to get his career back on track after injuries plagued him in his first three seasons with Golden State. The Warriors opted to trade him to the Nets during the 2010-11 season. The Nets passed on him last offseason, and Wright -- more of a natural power forward -- signed with Dallas and played mostly center.
Wright, 24, remains a bargain for the 2012-13 season at again just under $1 million. His role won't become clear until the Mavs fill out their roster. Starting center Brendan Haywood is under contract but is an amnesty candidate, particularly if the Mavs sign Deron Williams. Backup center Ian Mahinmi is an unrestricted free agent. Depending how the Mavs fill the backup power forward position, Wright could also see time there.
He is one of just a handful of players expected to be under contract heading into July. He's joined by:
* Partially guaranteed
**Amnesty clause candidate