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Dollars and Sense: Samuel Dalembert

9/13/2013

The NBA is about competition on the floor, but it’s also about dollars and cents. Teams now must find players that can outperform deals they’re signed to and use them as assets on the floor or as assets to flip in order to acquire a game-changing piece. ESPNDallas.com will grade how the Dallas Mavericks fared in terms of contracts of their new acquisitions.

Samuel Dalembert: Signed to a two-year, $7,568,030 contract. Dalembert will be paid $3,700,748 in 2013-14.

Dalembert’s contract is a high-value deal. The major reason for that is he’s well below market value for a player who can be a starting center.

But there is a sense of buyer beware when you look at Dalembert. They’re getting a vagabond big man, as Dallas will be the fifth home in five years for Dalembert, who has been hampered by nagging injuries and inability to mesh within different cultures. Dalembert is looking to stick in Dallas.

The question: Will this well-traveled big man be more Tyson Chandler or Chris Kaman? The answer to that question likely falls somewhere in the middle. He does provide the team a defensive-minded center, a necessity next to Dirk Nowitzki.

Another reason it is considered a high-value deal: The second year only has $1.8 million guaranteed with no guarantee date. His contract also contains a 15-percent trade kicker. That percentage would have to be paid by the team that is acquiring him.

Dalembert, if motivated, should fill the Mavs' need for a defensive presence. With Brandan Wright, DeJuan Blair and Bernard James in the mix, the Mavs don’t have to push Dalembert very hard in terms of demanding heavy minutes. If he works out, it’s a great bargain for the Mavs. If it doesn’t work out, they keep going down the trail and didn’t break the bank or cripple themselves with excessive years with him.

Grade: A-