It’s not all about Carmelo Anthony in Dallas today. Yes, Melo remains the top priority but that doesn’t mean the Mavs are putting all of their eggs in one basket. The Mavericks have been very busy making contact with multiple free agents the first 24 hours of free agency.
The Mavs first dined with their very own free agent PG, Devin Harris. Mark Cuban has been very clear that he would like to re-sign the 2-time Maverick to a larger contract and larger role on the team. Dirk Nowitzki re-signing is also a forgone conclusion. But who else have the Mavs contacted…
Adrian Wojnarowski from Yahoo Sports reported the Dallas Mavericks were the first team to contact Luol Deng the moment free agency began. Deng has been a player many have been linking to the Mavericks before the season even ended.
Seen as a replacement for the departing Shawn Marion, Deng plays solid on both ends of the court. At age 29 he’s younger and safer to sign to a longer term contract. SF is a position of need on the team, and a position of depth in free agency.
Deng averaged 16 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 2.9 assists last season playing for both the Bulls and the Cavs.
If Carmelo is option 1, then Deng is option 2.
Even younger than Deng is the 25 year old SF, Chandler Parsons. The Mavs are pursuing the Rockets restricted free agent as a consolation prize with upside. If the Rockets get Anthony, Parsons will likely be made available by the Rockets.
Parsons isn’t the defender Deng is but his offensive production is nothing to scoff at.
He averaged 16.6 points, 5.5 rebounds, and 4 assists per game last season in Houston.
ESPN reported the Mavs have also looked at 28 year old Trevor Ariza. Ariza, who some even rate higher than Deng, will not be demanding a max deal, but will still cost a pretty penny (much like Deng) and take up most of the Mavs’ spending money this offseason.
Ariza averaged 14.4 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 2.5 assists last season. According to Ariza the Mavericks have already contacted him.
Believe it or not but Paul Pierce has also claimed to be contacted by the Mavs. The 36 year old draft classmate of Dirk’s isn’t done yet. He averaged 13.5 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 2.4 assists last season in Brooklyn.