Tag: Charlie Villanueva

Dallas Mavericks v Denver Nuggets

Mavericks sign JaVale McGee

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The Mavericks were reportedly interested in JaVale McGee, and then the Lakers joined the mix.

Dallas got its man – the one who has played just 28 games the last two seasons and has more than his share of mental lapses.

Mavericks release:

The Dallas Mavericks announced today that they have signed free-agent center JaVale McGee.

Marc Stein of ESPN:

Note to Kings: This is how you get value on a talented player who has underachieved and is trying to prove himself. If McGee plays well this season, the Mavericks get him on a minimum contract for next season. If he doesn’t, they don’t have to pay him anything next season. And they’re not paying him $9.5 million this year to find out whether he still has it.

But before looking to 2016-17 McGee must just make this year’s team.

McGee gives Dallas the offseason limit of 20 players. At least 15 – the regular-season roster limit – have fully guaranteed salaries:

  • Wesley Matthews
  • Chandler Parsons
  • Dirk Nowitzki
  • Deron Williams
  • Zaza Pachulia
  • J.J. Barea
  • Devin Harris
  • Raymond Felton
  • Justin Anderson
  • Jeremy Evans
  • John Jenkins
  • Charlie Villanueva
  • Samuel Dalembert
  • Maurice N’Dour
  • Salah Mejri

The other four:

McGee’s guarantee is unclear, as is his place on the roster. Even if McGee’s salary is fully guaranteed, he’ll have to best at least one player in the same boat for a regular-season roster spot.

He’ll compete with Pachulia, Dalembert, Mejri and Famous to fill the center role vacated by DeAndre Jordan. If he’s healthy and focused – two longshots – McGee can help. He’s 7-foot and at least had excellent hops.

There’s nothing wrong with Dallas betting on these longshots. Jordan’s defection left the Mavericks desperate. They’re throwing a bunch of players against the wall and hoping one sticks. McGee makes sense with that strategy.

I’m a bit surprised McGee accepted this deal, though. The 76ers owed him $12 million this season. After Philadelphia’s set-off, McGee will make just an extra $1,043,723 from Dallas. Was that really worth locking himself into a minimum salary for next season – especially because even that isn’t guaranteed? At some point McGee needs to reestablish his viability as an NBA player, but I would have held out for a one-year contract. The fallback would have been sitting and getting paid by the 76ers, not a two-year minimum contract with a team option.

The Mavericks need McGee to make better decisions, but he probably made a poor one merely by signing with them.

McGee remains a paradox.

Report: Mavericks give Salah Mejri fully guaranteed salary

BASKET-EURL-ANADOLU EFES-REAL MADRID
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The Mavericks have at least 14 players with guaranteed salaries for next season.

One name in that group is a bit of a surprise, at least once you get past Dallas’ well-publicized pursuit of Maurice NDour.

The Mavericks also gave a fully guaranteed 2015-16 salary to Salah Mejri, whom they’d been linked to for a while.

Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders:

Dallas’ 14 players with reportedly guaranteed salaries for next season:

  • Wesley Matthews
  • Chandler Parsons
  • Dirk Nowitzki
  • Deron Williams
  • Zaza Pachulia
  • J.J. Barea
  • Devin Harris
  • Raymond Felton
  • Justin Anderson
  • Jeremy Evans
  • John Jenkins
  • Charlie Villanueva
  • Maurice N’Dour
  • Salah Mejri

The Mavericks will also have Samuel Dalembert and Jarrid Famous (unclear guarantees), Jamil Wilson and Brandon Ashley (small guarantees) and Dwight Powell (unguaranteed).

Those are 19 players competing for 15 regular-season roster spots.

Mejri’s guarantee would seem to give him a leg up, but Dallas hasn’t shied from eating guaranteed contracts in the past. He’ll have to earn his roster spot in training camp just like everyone else.

Mejri is a 29-year-old, 7-foot-2 center who played for Real Madrid last season and represented Tunisia in the 2012 London Olympics. He uses his size relatively well on both ends of the floor – finishing at the rim, defending the paint and crashing the glass – but facing NBA athleticism will be a major adjustment.

The Mavericks are desperate at center after DeAndre Jordan reneged and re-signed with the Clippers. Maybe Mejri will help. The best thing I can say about him: Dallas believed in him enough to fully guarantee his 2015-16 salary. That’s either a positive signal or sign of desperation – or maybe a bit of both.

Report: Charlie Villanueva gets another minimum contract with Mavericks

Dallas Mavericks v Los Angeles Lakers
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The Mavericks big offseason – agreeing to sign DeAndre Jordan and Wesley Matthews – to go with Dirk Nowitzki and Chandler Parsons probably still requires a point guard.

Devin Harris, J.J. Barea (who agreed to the room exception) and Raymond Felton are all at least decent backups but underwhelming as starters.

Jeremy Lin, both for his talent and fit in a pick-and-roll system, should be Dallas’ top target. That would probably involve a sign-and-trade.

But as the Mavericks explore that, they’re not overlooking other needs.

Tim MacMahon of ESPN:

Last season, Charlie Villanueva didn’t have a guaranteed contract entering training camp. He earned a little more security this year.

Villanueva is a solid stretch four, shooting 37.6% on 3-pointers last season. He might not do much else, especially defend, but that skill is vital in Dallas.

The Mavericks scored a sterling 110.5 points per 100 possessions with Monta Ellis, Parsons, Nowitzki and Tyson Chandler on the floor. Swap Villanueva for Nowitzki and that barely drops to 110.4.

Whoever starts at point guard in Dallas, that outside shooting from the power forward spot is pivotal for floor spacing around the pick-and-roll. Nowitzki can’t play all the time, and his minutes should probably come down even further at age 37. Villanueva preserves the spacing.

Acquiring Lin or another point guard remains the priority. But Villanueva will make his job a little easier.

Rajon Rondo very cleverly steals jump ball against big man (video)

Dallas Mavericks v Oklahoma City Thunder
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The 6-foot-1 Rajon Rondo forced a jump ball against 6-foot-10 Mitch McGary, a tough proposition for the Mavericks point guard.

So Rondo got clever, not jumping with McGary and instead peeling off to snag McGary’s tip.

How many Mavericks were in on this play?

Amar’e Stoudemire and Charlie Villanueva both lined up next to Enes Kanter, leaving Dion Waiters open. That all but assured the tip would go to Waiters, so Rondo knew where to go.

It’s official, Amar’e Stoudemire signs with Dallas Mavericks

Milwaukee Bucks v New York Knicks
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We all knew it was coming, now it is official:

Amar’e Stoudemire is a Dallas Maverick.

He was bought out of the last year of his Knicks contract so he could go chase a ring (plus the Knicks should play their younger guys to tank for a draft pick see what they’ve really got). For Dallas, they needed depth up front since trading Brandan Wright to Boston in the Rajon Rondo deal.

“I’m excited to be a part of a first-class organization,” Stoudemire said in a released statement. “To play alongside Dirk Nowitzki, Tyson Chandler and other great players, I think it’s a tremendous opportunity for me to compete for a championship.”

Stoudemire is not the high-flying athletic guy who played with the Suns, was a six-time All-Star and signed a max deal with the Knicks. Injuries have robbed us of that explosive guy.

However, Stoudemire is still good on the pick-and-roll and Dallas gets nearly 30 percent of its offense off that play (the only team that runs it more is Orlando). He can help them on the offensive end, but he’s not much of a boost on the other ends.

Still, for a veteran minimum he’s an upgrade over Greg Smith and Charlie Villanueva for the Mavs.