This summer, Brendan Haywood was going to be the solid, dependable center in the middle that the Mavericks would operate around. Hence the five-year, $42 million deal they gave him.
Then Tyson Chandler came in and took over the starting center spot with his play.
Haywood is now the expensive backup, playing about 18 or 19 minutes most nights, giving them 4.6 points and 5 rebounds a game.
So the Mavericks have shopping Haywood around a little and gotten mostly laughs back, according to ESPN Dallas. For example, he is not going to Denver in any Carmelo Anthony deal. The Nuggets are not interested. At all. Even teams that need a center are not interested.
I’ve likewise been assured in the strongest terms that Houston, even after losing Yao Ming to a potentially career-ending setback, is not looking at Haywood as a potential replacement and has made that clear to the Mavs, despite what has been reported in some precincts locally. “Less than zero interest” is the way one source with knowledge of the Rockets’ thinking jokingly described it. Which is why the similarly reported notion that offering up Haywood could somehow put the Mavs in play for longtime Mavs favorite Kevin Martin — whom Dallas pursued unsuccessfully last season before the Rockets acquired Martin from Sacramento — has been politely ignored here.
The last week has us gun shy about saying “he can’t be traded with that contract” but smart money is betting that Dallas is stuck with Haywood for a long time.