Nobody really thinks Dirk Nowitzki is going anywhere. He may opt out of his existing deal and become a free agent, but that is very different than leaving.
Oh, some teams likely will come a courting, but Nowitzki and the Mavericks are already working on a max extension to his existing contract. If he left he’d have to take a pay cut. And if you think Mark Cuban is going to take pennies on the dollar back in a sign-and-trade for Nowitzki, then you don’t know how he got to be a billionaire. That would be a hard deal to strike.
In fact, Cuban told DallasBasketball.com he is happy Nowitzki may opt out.
1. “Dirk is actually helping the team by opting out,” Cuban said.
2. An opt-out “gives us the ability to create financial room to add players,” he said.
3. That “financial room” is “not cap room, just dollars we save in a new, but longer deal,” Cuban said.
Nowitzki has not taken action on this yet; he has until June 30 to officially decide to opt out of his final $21.5-million year to become a Summer of 2010 free agent. If he does so, once that window opens, he is a free agent on July 1.
The Mavericks could get burned — remember when Steve Nash left via free agency, something the Mavericks did not expect. There are risks because at this point in his career Dirk wants to win and he may be tempted by other teams that can offer that chance, even if he makes less money.
But ideally Nowitzki wants to win in Dallas. To do that means bringing in more players, and if opting out frees up some cap space to do that, then this will have played out just like Cuban had planned.
On Monday, Dion Waiters agreed to a one-year, $2.9 million deal with the Heat, far less than most people thought he would get as one of the few significant free agents still on the market. Tuesday afternoon, he posted an explanation on Instagram for his deal.
Here’s what he said:
I didn’t do it for the money… I did it for the opportunity to go out & ball & have fun. Everything else will take care of its self!!! I just felt like it was the best situation for me…& my family. I could have waited & got wat I wanted. But I rather be happy then miserable at the end of the day!!! Meaning Yu can have everything & still not be happy… #heatnation let’s get it!!! #provethemwrong #stamped #Philly
It seems clear, based on the market, that the kinds of offers Waiters was hoping for weren’t out there for him. In Miami, with Dwyane Wade gone, he’ll probably start at shooting guard and have plenty of opportunities to prove himself in hopes of landing a long-term deal next summer.
While we wait for the Celtics to make a bigger move to trade for another star, they’re filling out the end of their roster. Sheridan Hoops’ Michael Scotto is reporting that they’ve signed Demetrius Jackson, the No. 45 pick in last month’s draft, to a four-year deal.
Jackson declared for the draft after his junior season at Notre Dame. Talent-wise, he has the chance to be a major steal for Boston — DraftExpress has him ranked as the 17th-best overall prospect in this year’s draft class. But he might not play much his first year. The Celtics’ roster is already crowded and there’s still the chance that they’ll make another move with some of their much-vaunted assets if the right star becomes available.
ATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Hawks have signed undrafted rookie free agent center Matt Costello of Michigan State.
The 6-foot-9, 245-pound Costello averaged 5.7 points and 5 rebounds on the Hawks’ summer league team in Las Vegas.
Costello averaged 10.7 points and 8.2 rebounds as a senior at Michigan State. He holds the school’s career record with 146 blocked shots.
Terms of the deal were not released.
Jamal Crawford knows how to get buckets.
He does it against NBA level defenders, so put him in a free-flowing pro-am — let’s say the Seattle pro-am in his hometown — and he barely breaks a sweat dropping 44. And nailing the game winner.
Doc Rivers hopes to see a lot of that next season.