Fireworks? Mavs' offense needs some
July, 4, 2012
By Jeff Caplan | ESPNDallas.com
On July 4, when the colorful blast of fireworks celebrates our independence, one can't help but think of the Mavericks' sluggish offense of the past season and who could be called upon to spark the offense next season.
With Deron Williams off the board and Jason Terry, the Mavs' second-leading scorer more often than not during his eight seasons in Dallas, on his way to the Boston Celtics, the Mavs as of now have one scorer who averaged more than 10.6 points a game last season. That, of course, is Dirk Nowitzki, who averaged 21.6.
Shawn Marion is next at 10.6, then Vince Carter at 10.1. Rodrigue Beaubois, who played a total of 12 minutes in the first-round playoff sweep, is your fourth-leading scorer at 8.9 points.
The Mavs' flow offense last season didn't exactly flow all that much, and part of the reason was the 18 games missed by Jason Kidd due to three separate injuries and other games taken off to rest his 39-year-old body.
Dallas has seven players under contract, plus three rookies selected in last week's draft. That leaves five roster spots open. Those can be filled via free agency or trades or both. The Mavs do have an $8.9 million trade exception created by the Lamar Odom deal to the Los Angeles Clippers.
Dallas will be active in trying to convince Steve Nash to return and man the point guard spot. Kidd remains a possibility. Both old-timers are also being courted by the New York Knicks, with Nash being their prime target. Mavs free agent Delonte West is also in play.
Here's a look at what the Mavs' roster currently looks like. View with caution:
Guard -- At this point it's impossible to separate point guard from shooting guard because the Mavs don't have a single pure point guard on the roster: Rodrigue Beaubois, Dominique Jones, Jared Cunningham, Vince Carter.
Small forward -- Shawn Marion, Jae Crowder.
Power forward -- Dirk Nowitzki.
Center -- Brendan Haywood, Brandan Wright, Bernard James.