Second-year center Bernard James cleared waivers and is expected to re-sign with the Mavs, sources told ESPN.com's Marc Stein.
The Mavs didn't want to waive James, but they needed every possible dollar of salary-cap space as they prepare to finalize a three-year deal for more than $25 million with Monta Ellis. Waiving James, who had a nonguaranteed contract, created almost $300,000 of cap space.
The Mavs have an agreement in principle to re-sign the 6-foot-10, 240-pound James to a minimum-salary contract after making the Ellis deal official. James, who played in 46 games as a rookie, would back up Samuel Dalembert and Brandan Wright. The Mavs have early Bird rights for Wright, meaning they can exceed the cap to re-sign him, and his return is a virtual certainty.