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February 9, 5:00 PM ET
Chat with Tim MacMahon

Buzzmaster
  (5:09 PM)

Tim has been delayed traveling to Denver. He will be here to answer questions at approximately 4:30 p.m. CT. Sorry for the delay.

Tim MacMahon
  (5:34 PM)

Sorry about the delay. The Denver airport is not designed to get in and out of quickly. Plus, I got my time zones confused when I told the boss what time I wanted to chat. I'll try to make up for lost time.

Alex (Houston)

At this point does Cuban care about the Luxury Tax when looking to add to players via trade?

Tim MacMahon
  (5:37 PM)

Cuban has a financial pain threshold, but it varies depending on how much of an impact he thinks the trade would make. Example: The Jason Kidd deal, which didn't work out exactly as the Mavs planned but cost Cuban eight figures. Cuban is willing to lose money to win games, but he isn't just going to throw cash around. For example, the Sixers might be able to twist Cuban's arm to get him to take Samuel Dalembert's contract in a deal for Andre Iguodala, if they'd take Matt Carroll as part of the return package. Cuban won't continue a conversation that involves Elton Brand's deal, though.

Todd (Keller)

It seemed like in the second half of last nights game Josh Howard reverted back to "good" Josh...Tough on the ball defender, slasher, and rebounder. Any chance at consistancy with him or is he going to be up and down the rest of his career?

Tim MacMahon
  (5:38 PM)

If the Mavs could get Golden State on the schedule every game, I firmly believe Josh Howard would be an All-Star again. If that doesn't happen, I think we'll see flashes of the good Josh but not a consistently great player.

Damian (New York)

The only real scenario involving Caron Butler to Dallas is with Josh as the centerpiece right? How much interest do the Mavs have in Caron, let's say from 1 to 10?

Tim MacMahon
  (5:40 PM)

Yes, Josh Howard would have to go to get Caron Butler. And the Mavs probably have to take back DeShawn Stevenson (owed $4.1 million next season), too. This seems like the most likely deal to go down -- Howard and a non-rotation player for those two -- at this point. But let's see what happens during All-Star weekend. There are mixed feelings about Butler in the Mavs' front office.

Michael (Fort Worth)

do you think the mavs would be making a mistake if they made a lateral move (swingman for swingman) rather than trading for a center? The Lakers are the standard with three 7 footers who can play.....

Tim MacMahon
  (5:41 PM)

What great centers are on the trade block? I've read speculation about Chris Kaman, but it seems like the Clippers are committed to building with him as part of the core. If they deal Marcus Camby, they want real basketball value. The Mavs are trying to peddle expiring contracts.

Austin (Fort Worth)

This may be wishful thinking, but do the Mavs have any chance at LeBron should he decide he wants to leave Cleveland? Howard, Dampier, Roddy, first rounder. I know Roddy is considered untouchable by Cuban, but for Lebron?

Tim MacMahon
  (5:43 PM)

Cuban said he'd part with Rodrigue Beaubois only in a deal for one or two players. It doesn't take a genius to figure out that LeBron tops the list. The Mavs will try to make a play for LeBron -- don't you have to? -- but I wouldn't get my hopes up for King James coming to Dallas.

Charlene Warner (Dallas)

With the trade exception we received in the Humphries/Najera trade, what exactly will that help us accomplish other than saving money this season.

Tim MacMahon
  (5:45 PM)

The hope is that the Mavs can the $2.4 million trade exception it to acquire a nice young player to add to their bench. Courtney Lee is an example of a guy who might be moved that would fit in price window. The Mavs will try to use the exception to help facilitate a trade between two other teams and get a role player with potential for their trouble.

David (Dallas)

Is there any realistic trade out there that can turn the Mavs into contenders. I think Kevin Martin destroys the hopes of defensive intensity, Butler is a poor mans J-ho (and just as injury prone), but Iguodala intrigues me. He's a defensive minded, selfless player that is capable of scoring in bunches when needed. I think he's the real deal... Is he? and can the Mavs nab him?

Tim MacMahon
  (5:47 PM)

Iguodala, in my opinion, is the best talent of that bunch. Does he make the Mavs legit contenders? Probably not. But he would improve their chances. However, it sounds like the Sixers could get a better deal for him than what the Mavs can offer. As far as Butler goes, I think he makes the Mavs a little better this year and would be a valuable trade chip as an expiring contract next season.

Andrew (Fort Worth)

Tim, don't you think with the impending CBA situation, and still writhing economic state of affairs, the Mavs just swallow another illogical knee jerk move (Humphries to NJ for broke down Najera) such as Howard to DC for the listless Caron, much less overshooting talent and opting for a bankruptcy move that doesn't help the long-term goals in Iggy? Shouldn't the Mavs relinquish all hopes to add a 2 to Dirk's 1 for nothing (a la Pau to LA) until the Summer??? I don't think that the Mavs need to make a move-as chatter has already disheveled the team's composure...thoughts?

Tim MacMahon
  (5:49 PM)

The Mavs can make a trade before the deadline and still have a chance to be a sign-and-trade player in the summer free agent market. I wouldn't call the trade with the Nets illogical. It was about dollars, not basketball sense. But if they can use that trade exception, that deal will also help improve the on-court product.

josh (san jose)

hey what are your thoughts on why monta ellis didnt make the all star team and why he is "over-rated"? you did just recently see hiuim put up 46 on 17-23 shooting right?

Tim MacMahon
  (5:50 PM)

No doubt Ellis is one of the league's most explosive players. But it's tough to be an All-Star on a 13-win team.

Casey Trammell (Houston, TX)

Are the Mavs resting Dampier so that he does not get his contract guarunteed for next season or is he really needing so many games off to rest his knee?

Tim MacMahon
  (5:52 PM)

No. Dampier isn't on pace to hit the minutes mark that would guarantee his salary next season anyway. (Needs to average 30 minutes in the 70 games in which he plays the most. No chance of that happening, especially since he won't play 70 games.) They're trying to get Dampier healthy because they need his presence down the stretch, especially on defense.

Philip Postel (Jerusalem, Israel)

Are JJ Barea's days numbers with the emergence of Roddy B (not to be mistaken for Marty B) and his limited minutes of late - writing on the wall?

Tim MacMahon
  (5:53 PM)

That might be a night-to-night situation. Rick Carlisle won't hand the rookie anything. Beaubois will have to earn every minute. But Barea is a backup. Beaubois might develop into a star. No question which one is more important to the franchise's future.

Jake Ramage (New Jersey)

Any update on Tim Thomas? He seems to have a lot of personal issues which the Mavs never seem to leak any info on. This guy should be the 8th man, he is still pretty good.

Tim MacMahon
  (5:54 PM)

Thomas is dealing with a serious family matter and might not return to the Mavericks. The Mavs would welcome him back with open arms, but they've told him to take as much time off as he needs.

David (AAC)

It seems like alot of the trade buzz for the Mavs has revolved around adding SF Carson Butler in a deal for Howard with some spare parts. How does this trade help a team that lacks a post player and a SG? Isn't Butler just another version of Sean Marion?

Tim MacMahon
  (5:55 PM)

Whether Butler would fit in the Mavs' mix much, if any, better than Josh Howard is a legit question. And it's one being discussed behind close doors with the team's brass.

Michael Pullen (Oklahoma City)

Why don't Donnie and Don do more deals with each other? You would think Nellie would give us some of the guys he does not want and I'm sure there are more than a few...

Tim MacMahon
  (5:57 PM)

If a 13-win team doesn't want a guy, why would the Mavs? Also remember that Nellie and Cuban don't have what you would call a good working relationship.

Zoe Garai (Oak Cliff)

Why is Kidd going on vacation rather than staying in his home city that is hosting the All Star game?

Tim MacMahon
  (5:57 PM)

Because a 36-year-old playing a lot of minutes needs all the rest and relaxation he can get.

Tom W. Inman (Plano, TX)

Is Nick Calethes doing anything in Greece? Considering he is another PG of the future, can we trade him and/or is he in the future plans?

Tim MacMahon
  (5:59 PM)

Haven't checked on Calathes recently. The Mavs don't expect him to come to Dallas on a full-time basis until the 2011-12 season. He's in their plans, but it wouldn't be stunning if he got traded at some point. Every player has his price.

Larry Barbour (Plano, TX)

Is James Singleton going to be moved? He never plays and he is liked around the league. Jeff Van Gundy has always liked him and was loving him when he called a game recently.

Tim MacMahon
  (6:00 PM)

Singleton is a possibility to get moved. He's an expiring contract that could give a team some energy. He has the right to waive the trade -- like Devean George a couple of years ago -- but I believe Singleton would be OK with going somewhere he could get playing time.

Joey (Dallas)

To get Iggy, is it really so bad to take back Dalembert or Brand? Brand could return to form and become a valuable trade option later and Dalembert only has another year after this on his contract I think. So he could be traded next year. I just dont see enough downside to NOT go after Iggy. Maybe its because im seeing through Mark Cuban's wallet and not mine!

Tim MacMahon
  (6:02 PM)

You could make an argument for Dalembert because he has only one more year left on the contract. But he's due more than $12 million next season, meaning he'd cost Cuban about $25 million. That's quite a price for a slightly above-average center. Elton Brand's contract would be a cap crippler, especially with the possibility of a hard cap on the horizon.

Ray (Corsicana, Tx)

This may be the biggest question of them all considering the way the Mavs have been playing lately. What are the chances, if any, that Dirk opts out of his contract this coming summer?

Tim MacMahon
  (6:03 PM)

I don't see Dirk leaving. He's made it very clear that he wants to end his career in Dallas.

Andrew (Dallas)

DeShawn Stevenson? What about Mike Miller and Butler. Miller seems like a great fit to me.

Tim MacMahon
  (6:04 PM)

Yeah, Miller would be a much better fit for the Mavs. But the Wizards want to get rid of Stephenson.

Tim MacMahon
  (6:05 PM)

OK, folks, I'm going to wrap it up now. Appreciate all the questions. Sorry I couldn't get to more. Check out the ESPNDallas.com Mavs blog for coverage of tonight's game against the Nuggets.