Mavericks Agree to Terms with JaVale McGee
It seems just like yesterday when the Dallas Mavericks lost out on center DeAndre Jordan in free agency. Mark Cuban and co. tried picking up the pieces right away, as they traded for Milwaukee Bucks center Zaza Pachulia and later signed Samuel Dalembert.
The Mavs aren’t done fixing their center position. Per reports, Dallas has brought on big man JaVale McGee, formerly of the 76ers, Nuggets and Wizards. The deal is reportedly over two years for the veteran’s minimum.
— Good Life Decoder (@GoodLifeDecoder) August 13, 2015
While landing McGee is far from getting a reliable stud like DeAndre Jordan, he could be part of the puzzle the Mavs are piecing together. More of a poor man’s DJ, McGee is not a star center that should start on a regular basis, but he does have a good amount of experience and even has some untapped potential. More importantly, McGee is a rim protector that can rebound and block shots at a high level.
In a sense, Dallas has constructed their own version of Jordan, but they’re doing it with three different players. Both McGee and Dalembert can rebound and block shots, while Pachulia is arguably a better offensive player than all of them. With their talents combined, Dallas still probably falls short of impressing anyone down low, but the collective moves now give Dallas a solid core at the position.
Dallas missed out on more than DeAndre Jordan this year, but they still improved their roster greatly by signing sharpshooter Wesley Matthews and upgrading at the point with veteran lead guard, Deron Williams.
On the surface, the Mavs are full of a bunch of retreads built around an aging Dirk Nowitzki. However, once you add in a hopefully healthy Matthews and Chandler Parsons, Dallas suddenly has the look of a legit playoff contender. With the Portland Trail Blazers seemingly slipping out of playoff contention, it’s at least arguable that the Mavs have made enough moves to give themselves a chance to compete in the brutal Western Conference.
Of course, merely competing for the NBA playoffs is a position Dallas has kept themselves in ever since winning their only NBA title. They want to be more than just a team in the playoffs, but heading into the 2015-16 NBA season, Vegas suggests they won’t be (+5000). Those NBA Finals odds aren’t the best, as Dallas is slumped in with the likes of the Indiana Pacers and Milwaukee Bucks: not trash teams, but also not on anyone’s list to contend for an NBA title.
The addition of JaVale McGee isn’t bad. It certainly helps from a depth perspective, while it’s not a crazy notion to think the 27-year old McGee could even exceed expectations this upcoming season. However, at first glance adding McGee looks as earth-shattering as the other moves Dallas successfully made this summer. In other words, Dallas will be a fun team to watch and they might get into the playoffs. A title contender, they probably aren’t, however.
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