Report: Mavericks re-sign Bernard James

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Bernard James didn’t want to be the Mavericks’ fourth center again.

He figured either he or DeJuan Blair, Dallas’ No. 3 center last year, would return and fill that role. But Blair heading to the Wizards didn’t clear a direct path for James.

The Mavericks traded for Tyson Chandler, who can fill a larger role than Samuel Dalembert did last season, kept Brandan Wright and traded for Greg Smith.

James could beat Smith for a rotation spot or maybe Wright or Smith would play more power forward. There are minutes up for grabs.

And James is pursuing them.

Marc Stein of ESPN:

Dallas renounced James – and Vince Carter and Shawn Marion – to clear cap space to sign Chandler Parsons. The Mavericks also used the room exception on Jameer Nelson, leaving them nothing but a minimum offer available for James.

Because James would have bird rights after his one-year contract, he can veto any trade next season. So, he will get some security (the same security he received last year on a one-year deal).

The 29-year-old third-year big man from Florida State is a solid defender, especially as a shot-blocker. Despite his limited offensive skills, he can still fill a small role.

The Mavericks now have 17 players under contract – two more than the regular-season limit. Ivan Johnson (just $25,000 guaranteed), Eric Griffin (just $150,000 guaranteed) or maybe even James himself are prime candidates to get waived unless Dallas makes another move. James’ guarantee is not clear, but usually, a non-fully guaranteed contract is reported as such.