Mavericks: Who is their best free agent option?

The Dallas Mavericks have a gaping hole at center and look to free agency to fill it. This free agent option should be their top target …and it’s not even close.

When the Dallas Mavericks traded for 19-year-old guard, Luka Doncic, they passed over a handful of young attractive centers. While their backcourt now looks formidable, their frontcourt leaves something to be desired.

Adding a starting caliber center now, appears to be objective numero uno this summer. It’s the weakest position on the team, and multiple options exist in free agency. It’s likely the Mavericks had these different options in mind when they added Doncic, but who are they specifically looking to add?

DeMarcus Cousins

By trading next year’s first round pick for Luka Doncic, the Mavericks have morphed from “rebuilding” to “win-now” seemingly overnight. One week ago it seemed strange to add Cousins to this young and impressionable squad. Now it’s not so crazy.

Julius Randle

He’s a power forward technically but has double-double ability, he’s a hometown talent, and he’s only 23-years old. The only problem is he’s a restricted free agent on a team with plenty of cash. The ONLY reason the Lakers let him walk is to afford LeBron James and Paul George, otherwise, he’s exactly the kinda guy they want to build around.

DeAndre Jordan

Have we no conviction, MFFL? I know, a mature reasonably-minded adult is supposed to forgive and forget when it benefits the team (and adding Jordan would do that), but come on man! Here’s a refresher on how royally hosed Jordan left the Mavericks a few seasons ago:

Clint Capela

Like the two players before him, Clint Capela is a double-double machine. He’s only 24-years –old and a key piece of the Rockets Championship-caliber squad. Like Randle, he’s a free agent of the restricted variety and a player the team has no intention of letting walk away (unless LeBron is in play).

But it’s hard to deny Clint Capela is the Mavericks’ best option at center.

Capela refined his game this past season and has quickly become one of the best centers in the NBA. He finished second in Most Improved Player and appears to still be improving by the day. He was a beast on the pick-and-roll last season making him the dream co-star to the Mavs’ Dennis Smith Jr.

Wrap-up

The Mavericks are pretty good at disguising their intentions so it’s difficult to predict what their plan is this summer. But they’ve given little indication they are still interested in Boogie Cousins and similarly, Cousins has given no indication he’s interested in the Mavs.

And Julius Randle is someone who’d probably enjoy playing for his hometown team, but I just don’t see how the Mavs can pry him from LA.

Houston is likely to match any offer given to Clint Capela, but that doesn’t mean the Mavericks shouldn’t try. Capela is the perfect player for the Mavs and worst-case scenario is the Mavs drive up the price Houston must pay to keep him. So why not make a big offer?

That was rhetorical.

There are multiple options for the Mavs to bulk up their frontcourt but there is only one great one. Swing for the fences, Mavericks, and offer Capela the max. If it falls through there are plenty of bargain options and trade scenarios floating around that can tide everyone over. But none are as good the Clint Capela option.