Samuel Dalembert’s contract expires after next season. It includes a 2014-15 salary of $3,867,282, of which only $1.8 million is guaranteed.
In other words the Mavericks have two options for Dalembert:
- Pay him $3,867,282 and have him on the roster
- Pay him $1.8 million and not have him on the roster
Mavericks president of basketball operations Donnie Nelson, via Eddie Sefko of The Dallas Morning News:
“He’s got a contract for next year,” Nelson said. “Absolutely we’ll have Sam back. Great guy. If we can get him to show up on time to practice, that’ll be a step in the right direction.”
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Dalembert’s full salary will cut into the Mavericks’ cap room this summer – and they should have a significant amount of space – but he’s also a bargain. Dallas’ starting center, Dalembert is averaging 6.6 points, 6.7 rebounds and 1.2 blocks in 20.3 minutes per game.
He’ll turn 33 before next season (maybe even this season if the Mavericks extend their playoff run to May 10), and as Nelson alluded, Dalembert has issues managing his time. But that’s why Dallas got him so cheaply.
The Mavericks are 9-1 in the 10 games Dalembert has played most. They need to figure out how to get more Dalembert, not less – and that’s why they’re keeping him.
Then again, if Dalembert’s salary becomes the difference between adding an impact free agent and not, the plan could change. There’s a reason his contract isn’t fully guaranteed.
Chris Paul broke his finger Saturday.
The initial diagnosis said the injury wasn’t serious.
Ben Bolch of the Los Angeles Times:
Paul obviously wouldn’t push it during the preseason. If the Clippers are allowing him to play, this can’t be bad.
Really, the most challenging aspect to this is grasping the concept that a broke finger can be a minor injury.
Brad Stevens has a big challenge this year – sorting the Celtics’ deep roster of similarly able players.
It seems that process is shaking out at power forward and center.
A. Sherrod Blakely of CSN Northeast:
it appears Boston’s first four bigs will be starters David Lee and Tyler Zeller, with Amir Johnson and Kelly Olynyk off the bench.
That leaves Jonas Jerebko and Jared Sullinger, potentially on the outside looking in as far as the regular rotation is concerned.
Lee is the best passer of the bunch, which could partially explain why he’s starting. Boston’s most likely starting point guard, Marcus Smart, is still growing into the role of the lead ball-handler at the NBA level. Lee and presumptive starting shooting guard Avery Bradley can take some pressure off him.
Olynyk can space the floor for Isaiah Thomas-Johnson pick-and-rolls with the reserves and run pick-and-pops with Thomas himself.
I’m a little surprised Zeller is starting over Johnson, though. The Celtics just signed Johnson to a $12 million salary, and I thought they’d rely on his defense to set a tone early. Like Johnson, Zeller is a quality pick-and-roll finisher who can thrive with Thomas.
This is particularly bad news for Sullinger, who – barring a surprising contract extension – is entering a contract year. It seems those reports of offseason conditioning haven’t yet paid off. Jerebko’s deal also isn’t guaranteed beyond this season, but at least he has already gotten his mid-sized payday. Sullinger is still on his rookie-scale contract.