Dallas Mavericks: Kurt Thomas

Six-Pack: Vince Carter moves up scoring list

February, 16, 2012
A six-pack of Mavs statistical nuggets following Wednesday night’s home rout of Denver:

*With 15 points in the 102-84 win, Vince Carter passed David Robinson (20,790 points) for 33rd place on the NBA’s all-time scoring list.

*Dallas scored the first five points in the win and never relinquished that lead. It’s the third time already this season, according to the Elias Sports Bureau, that the Mavericks never trailed or were even tied. The Mavs had only one such game during the 2010-11 regular season and only one during its postseason run to the championship (Game 3’s 93-87 victory over Oklahoma City in the West finals.)

*The Mavericks have held their last nine opponents under 100 points and rank No. 5 in the league in scoring defense at 91.3 points per game allowed. Even without Tyson Chandler, Dallas ranks fourth in the league in defensive efficiency, allowing just 96.2 points per 100 possessions.

*Going back to Monday night, Dirk Nowitzki’s 11 points in the fourth quarter marked the first time all season he scored in double digits in the final period. Dirk did that 12 times last season. Yet over the past seven games, Nowitzki has averaged 23.7 points on 50.8-percent shooting, compared to 16.2 points per game on 43.0-percent shooting in the Mavs’ first 19 games.

*With one more block, Nowitzki will have 1,000 for his career, making him just the third player in league history to rack up 1,000 career 3-pointers and 1,000 career swats, joining Clifford Robinson and Rasheed Wallace. Jason Kidd, meanwhile, is five steals away from tying Michael Jordan for second place on the NBA’s all-time thefts list (2,14) behind John Stockton (3,265). At 38 days and 331 years old, Kidd is the fourth-oldest active player in the league behind Portland’s Kurt Thomas (39 years, 136 days old), Phoenix’s Grant Hill (39-135) and Miami’s Juwan Howard (39-10).

Will Mavs be in market for backup PF?

December, 2, 2011
If the Dallas Mavericks dip into the free-agent market beyond their own guys seeking deals, they'll be looking for short-term, cheap labor. Whether center Tyson Chandler re-signs or not, the Mavs could be interested in a power forward that can do some pounding and boarding when Dirk Nowitzki takes a breather.

The Mavs relied on Shawn Marion to move between small and power forward, which he did so admirably, but Dallas could use some more beef in that role. Carl Landry, 28, is a quality garbage man that can score and grab some boards, but he's not a minimum guy. That doesn't mean the Mavs couldn't go after him with their mid-level exception ($5 million, if they don't go more than $4 million over the $70 million luxury tax threshold -- meaning no Chandler -- or $3 million if they do spill over). Chuck Hayes, also 28, is another quality guy always around the action. He can board and he improved his scoring last season, but he is also not a minimum-salary player.

Speaking of veteran-minimum guys, hard-nosed Brian Cardinal is always an option to bring back on a one-year, minimum contract and the Mavs have reached out to agent Mark Bartelstein. Still, Dallas could also take a look at others, especially if Chandler walks and rebounding becomes a higher priority. Here's two home-staters to consider:

Jeff Foster, 6-11, 236
The soon-to-be 35-year-old has spent all 12 years of his career with the Indiana Pacers, including four seasons playing for Rick Carlisle. He's a classic heart-on-his-sleeve grinder who'll give all he's got every game. Foster, born in San Antonio and played at the since-renamed Southwest Texas State, last season averaged 3.3 points and 6.3 rebounds in 16.8 minutes a game, which breaks down to 13.4 rebounds and 6.1 on the offensive glass per 36 minutes.

Kurt Thomas, 6-9, 230
It might a few years too late for the 39-year-old former TCU and Dallas Hillcrest star. He always seemed a perfect fit over the years for the Mavs, but he never quite made it (OK, he did play five games with Dallas in 1997-98). Thomas did have two brief stints with the San Antonio Spurs a few years ago, but didn't get the championship his career still lacks. Thomas, 39, would be a perfect fit in the locker room and if he's got anything (he did average 22.7 minutes, 4.1 points and 5.8 rebounds in 52 games) he could finally be a fit.

Which free agents left worthy of the MLE?

July, 12, 2010
Udonis Haslem would have been a terrific free-agent addition to the Dallas Mavericks. But, not suprisingly, Haslem will take less money to stay in Miami and play with the Superfriends.

Finding a capable power forward or center remains a top priority for the Mavs, who are determined to reduce Dirk Nowitzki's minutes (he averaged 37.5 mpg last season). Behind Nowitzki is only Eduardo Najera. At center, Brendan Haywood signed a six-year deal with the Mavs, Erick Dampier may or may not be back and Ian Mahinmi, who agreed to terms Monday, is a project.

But, who in free agency is left that is worthy of paying and producing at the full mid-level exemption of $5.8 million starting next season?

Scan the free-agent list and the pickings are slim. How does Brad Miller sound? Al Harrington would be strong, low-post addition, but he'd be taking more than a 40-percent pay cut if he signed for the MLE.

Of course, Shaquille O'Neal remains the largest name on the market.

The options are so thin in free agency, that the Mavs might look to split the MLE among two or more players. Suns unrestricted free agent center Louis Amundson played for the minimum last season. He's more marketable now and he has several teams interested. Former Spurs center Fabricio Oberto is out there. So is former TCU star Kurt Thomas, as is Garland's Ike Diogu.

There just isn't much to throw good money at, which is why the Mavs are taking a long, hard look at using the Dampier trade chip in a possible deal for Minnesota's Al Jefferson. Right now, he's the best it gets.



Monta Ellis
20.6 4.7 1.5 33.7
ReboundsT. Chandler 11.5
AssistsM. Ellis 4.7
StealsM. Ellis 1.5
BlocksB. Wright 1.6