Should Dallas Mavericks fans finally forgive and forget DeAndre Jordan for his transgressions against them? Naw. Here’s why…
In the wake of DeAndre Jordan’s return to Dallas, many are asking if it’s time to forgive and forget the former object of their affection. After all, fans were able to make their signs, voice their “boos”, and get the last laugh when the Mavs pulled off the improbable win against the high flying Los Angeles Clippers.
Time to move on, right?
Not so fast, buddy. The drama from this summer may be old news to some but for the Mavericks, their fans, and anyone with a full view of the fallout, this issue is far from over.
Consider the situation DeAndre Jordan created…
The past three offseasons the Mavs entered free agency with the high hopes of luring a top free agent. First it was Deron Williams. Then it was Dwight Howard. Four months ago it was DeAndre Jordan. Up until this summer those attempts were absolute failures.
After clearing cap room season after season, the Mavs were repeatedly forced to sign “consolation prizes”, perpetually keeping the Mavs a fringe playoff team with low upside and low excitement. On July 3rd all of that changed.
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DeAndre Jordan, the Mavs primary target in free agency this summer, agreed to join the Mavs. Say what you want about DeAndre Jordan and the deficiencies in his game, but he’s a consensus top-5 NBA center who as yet to reach his prime. DeAndre Jordan doesn’t require plays and thrives on second chance opportunities and defense. He is a legit max-contract player and the perfect complement to Dirk Nowitzki.
By adding a player like DeAndre Jordan, the Mavs wouldn’t have just upgraded their team in 2015, but they would have been a much more attractive destination to other soon-to-be free agents in years to come. Jordan was the foundation to build upon and a transition piece for life after Dirk.
But alas it was not meant to be.
After verbally committing to DeAndre at the start of free agency, the Mavs had no choice but to discontinue their free agent shopping. The NBA salary cap makes it very cost prohibitive to exceed its threshold, so by committing max money to DeAndre Jordan, the Mavs had no money left to spend.
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And this is where DeAndre Jordan goes from just a weak-minded flake, to a terrible person.
DeAndre was said to start having reservations shorty after he committed on the 3rd. Unfortunately for the Mavericks, he didn’t voice those concerns to them. Ever. While DeAndre was anguishing over his next move, the summer’s premium free agents were disappearing from the market.
Sitting in limbo, the Mavs couldn’t properly court other free agents because their money was still technically committed to DeAndre. Even when DeAndre officially changed his mind and was locked up in his Houston home with his Clippers captors, he refused to inform the Mavericks. They had a pretty good idea, sure, but they still had a verbal contract in place and couldn’t move on to Plan B until someone from Camp DeAndre said or did something official.
Eventually DeAndre Jordan re-signed with the Clippers, officially releasing the Mavs from their commitment. But by then the top tier (or top two tiers) free agents had already been scooped up. The Mavericks immediately went into damage control and all things considered, they did a hell of a job building a roster in the wake of the events.
DeAndre Jordan didn’t just hurt the Mavericks this season, but he hurt the Mavs in seasons to come as well. It’s one thing he broke his verbal commitment (BTW: verbal contracts are difficult to enforce but they can still be legally binding), but it’s an entirely different thing he kept the Mavericks on the hook for so long, virtually ensuring they could not pursue any other premium free agents.
Forgive and forget?
The damage DeAndre Jordan’s actions did this past summer could last for years so forgiveness doesnt appear to be in the cards anytime soon. Besides, it’s fun to hate and DeAndre Jordan and Clippers make it really easy to hate. Hey DeAndre, get used to it, kid. This ain’t going away.