Dampier wants full mid-level exception

July, 1, 2010
7/01/10
12:53
AM CT
Erick Dampier wants the full mid-level exception from the Dallas Mavericks.

According to a source familiar with Dampier's thinking, the 6-foot-11 veteran is prepared to not return to Dallas if his price isn't met.

Dampier is strapped to a $13 million, non-guaranteed contract, a monstrous trade chip the Mavs hope to cash in for a significant addition. The trading team would immediately waive Dampier and instantly reap the salary-cap savings. Even if the Mavs fail to trade Dampier, they'll cut him to avoid paying the $13 million.

Dampier would then become an unrestricted free agent. It has been something of a given that Dampier would then re-sign with the Mavs at a reduced rate.

The Mavs love Dampier's screen-setting and his attention to detail as the defensive anchor, however, they don't want to touch the MLE, which last year was $5.85 million. They're likely more in line with the bi-annual exception, which was $1.99 million last season.

Dallas dumped its entire MLE on DeSagana Diop two summers ago and quickly regretted it, trading the 7-foot, underperforming center in mid-season to Charlotte. Diop was just 26 when the Mavs decided to pay the career bucket-a-game scorer.

Dampier is far more accomplished, but the Mavs aren't going down that road with a 14-year veteran who turns 35 on July 14 and finished the six-game playoff series loss to San Antonio without a field goal.

Mavs coach Rick Carlisle is in North Carolina meeting with unrestricted free agent Brendan Haywood. At 30, Haywood is a younger, more athletic option. He'll have plenty of suitors and he could net a decent raise from his $6 million salary last season, although his "I just work here" comment and erratic performances in the playoffs didn't do him any favors.

Haywood is also a possible sign-and-trade option. One hot rumor Wednesday night was Haywood-for-Shaquille O'Neal, but a Mavs source quickly said "no" to that notion.

Dampier could just be thinking the Mavs will get desperate if they lose Haywood and fail to trade for a quality big man.

He won't get the MLE in Dallas. It would be stunning if he got it anywhere.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Comments

You must be signed in to post a comment

Already have an account?

103.3 FM ESPN PODCASTS

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Rick Carlisle

Dallas Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett at Mavericks media day to discuss his expectations for the upcoming season.

Galloway & Company: Mark Cuban

Mark Cuban joins Galloway and Company to discuss the Mavericks' new GM Gersson Rosas and much more.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Mark Cuban talk

Fitzsimmons and Durrett discuss Mark Cuban's comments from Las Vegas about the Mavericks' offseason, how he sees the team without Dwight Howard and more.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Marc Stein

Marc Stein joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why the Mavericks didn't want to match Cleveland's offer to Andrew Bynum, what's next for the Mavs and the possibility of Dirk Nowitzki ending his career elsewhere.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: The Standoff

Jeff Platt fires quick-hitters at Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon in the weekly sports standoff about Andrew Bynum, the Mavs' current backcourt, a potential Nelson Cruz suspension and more.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Ramona Shelburne

ESPN Los Angeles' Ramona Shelburne joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why she thinks Andrew Bynum got a bad rap in Los Angeles and how he would fit in with the Mavericks.

Fitzsimmons and Durrett: Buy or sell

Buy, sell or hold? If Dwight Howard goes to another team, what are the Mavs' options? The guys take a look at a list of potential fallback options.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Marc Stein

ESPN's Marc Stein joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to discuss the latest news on the Mavericks' meeting with Dwight Howard.

TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Dirk Nowitzki
PTS AST STL MIN
21.7 2.7 0.9 32.9
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsS. Dalembert 6.8
AssistsM. Ellis 5.7
StealsM. Ellis 1.7
BlocksS. Dalembert 1.2