Feb 29, 2012 4:40 PM EST
German national team coach Svetislav Pesic said Dirk Nowitzki is not expected to be a member of the team this summer as they attempt to qualify for EuroBasket 2013.
"I believe that Nowitzki isn't expecting my call," Pesic said. "He needs peace, a summer vacation. He has to think about his future. But, of course, we'll discuss his plans.
"Germany lived on Dirk's glory for long time,” Pesic said. “Since the bronze in Indianapolis, silver at the FIBA European Championship in 2005, up to these days.
"Because of the magnitude of his personality and basketball qualities, many other players were just - other players.
"That wasn't bad, it was normal back in those days as Nowitzki is a true leader on the court, but I think that there is a new wave of players in Germany that can help to build new future."
Feb 29, 2012 9:54 AM EST
While Avery Johnson considers the Mavericks "a threat" to sign Deron Williams, Billy King disagreed.
“I don’t look at it as a threat,” King said. “I mean, it’s reality. They’ve got cap space, and he’s obviously from Dallas. So I think if you follow Avery, the whole quote, he says ‘But I do think he’ll be playing in Brooklyn next year.’ So ... it doesn’t worry me.”
Mark Cuban also downplayed the assumption that Dallas will vigorously pursue Williams.
“Let me say this: There’s a lot of presumptions going on about what we’re going to do this summer, but you shouldn’t pay attention to anything you’ve read or heard because that’s not the way we approach things,” Cuban said. “We’re the last organization to get one thing in our mind and that’s the only thing we’re going to do ... I’m going be opportunistic. We’re going to try to create a championship team, or continue to be a championship team, and that’s evaluating everything in front of you and making the right decisions with the new CBA.”
Feb 28, 2012 10:09 AM EST
In Dallas for a Monday practice ahead of a game against the Mavericks, Deron Williams was asked his thoughts on playing at the American Airlines Center.
“I always like playing here,” Williams said. “It’s probably my favorite (arena) to play in. I just enjoy playing here — I enjoy playing in front of my friends, family. It’s always good they get the chance to come and see me play.”
Avery Johnson acknowledged that the Mavericks could sign Williams.
“For me personally, working for Mark Cuban, he’s a threat, okay?” said Johnson. “I know the guy. So I think because of the success he’s had — and I know he got criticized a lot for ... all those years where he didn’t win a championship — but he’s had some really great success here that rivals any situation. So that’s a threat. And for us, we don’t make any assumptions until we get Deron signed on the dotted line.
“So the main thing is, we keep doing what we’re doing, Deron’s been a major part of what we’re doing behind the scenes,” Johnson said. “He’s been a major part of what we’re doing with the new Barclays Center. So we’re saying he’s doing all of that with the intent that he’s going to remain with us in the future.”
Asked about his future Monday, Williams delivered what has become his standard response: “You know, I’m just trying to play out the season and look at my options after the season.”
Williams was also asked if he prefers the idea of being in his hometown or the arena itself.
“Home,” he said. “(And) I just like the arena. I think it’s a good shooting background. I just enjoy playing here. Fans — the fans are great. It’s always good when arenas have a lot of energy. Ours (the Prudential Center) doesn’t have too much energy.”
Feb 28, 2012 9:50 AM EST
Dwight Howard's list of preferred destinations remains the Nets, Lakers and Mavericks with the Nets as the clear leader, according to a source.
One source said Howard wants to "be Kobe Bryant, not be with Kobe Bryant."
Sam Amick also cites close friends of Howard who say Bryant informed him that he would be the second or third option on the Lakers.
RealGM's Jarrod Rudolph first reported details of the conversation in which Bryant compared Howard's potential impact to Tyson Chandler.
But one source says Howard preferred the Nets even before the Bryant conversation.
Feb 27, 2012 11:56 PM EST
Lamar Odom did not report back to the Mavericks on Monday and there is no timetable for his return.
Odom left the team on Wednesday to attend to his ill father in Los Angeles, according to a source.
"Lamar is not here today," Rick Carlisle said on Monday. "He is still dealing with a family matter and the hope is he'll join us soon, and we'll update you when there's an update."
Amid rumors that Odom might not return to the Mavericks and a midseason buyout could be a possibility, owner Mark Cuban told ESPN's Tim MacMahon via email Monday night: "We haven't discussed a buyout and we wouldn't do a buyout. No chance that happens at all. We want to help Lamar work through any personal issues and expect him to be a valuable contributor to the Mavs this season. Players go through challenges from time to time and we try to be (an) organization that fully supports our players when things are challenging for them. We will do the same for Lamar."
Feb 24, 2012 10:32 AM EST
The Mavericks are unlikely to make a move before the trade deadline.
“We’re not looking to change unless someone makes us an offer we can’t refuse,” Mark Cuban said. “We’re not looking to shake anything up. We think we’ve got a good team that hasn’t played its best basketball yet.”
Cuban is willing to take on more salary if it helps the Mavericks contend for a title.
“Priority No. 1 is to win a championship,” Cuban said. “If there’s something that takes up cap room that puts us over the top, I’m in.”
Feb 23, 2012 10:43 AM EST
Dirk Nowitzki was in unchartered territory after the Mavericks won the NBA title last year.
"I didn't know what to expect," Nowitzki said. "I know one thing changed, and that was my motivation was gone for a little bit. And I really had to fight to get it back and get the fun back."
Nowitzki said a combination of last season’s run to the championship, followed by playing for Germany in the Olympic qualifying tournament left him with little recovery time.
"Now I reached both goals, and it was just hard in the beginning," he said. "The Euros came too quick, right after the [NBA] championship. I only had, like, a month off. I needed more time to get away and enjoy the championship. If I would have had a couple months off to enjoy it, party, get everything out of the way, then start slowly back up -- that would have been the way to go. But I decided to play, to try my best, and we didn't qualify, unfortunately."
Nowitzki has come on after a slow start, averaging 25 points and 9.6 rebounds over his last five games.
"Now I'm as fiery as I ever was," he said. "I'm out there moving well again and feel good."
Feb 22, 2012 8:16 PM EST
Over the coming weeks and possibly months, the eventual resolution of the Dwight Howard situation will be the first major test of how, if at all, the new CBA has shifted the dynamics behind the efforts of teams to retain their franchise players.
The new rules were designed to increase team leverage while reducing the power players possess to dictate when and where they will be moved.
The home team, which holds the player’s Bird Rights, can offer 7.5% annual salary raises, compared to 4.5% annual raises for all other teams. The home team can also offer a fifth contract year while all other teams are limited to four.
And perhaps most significantly, a loophole has been closed: The player can no longer receive the larger annual raises and extra contract year with a sign-and-trade from the home team to another team. The only way, as a free agent, that the player can receive these twin benefits is by staying put.
Another scenario is for the player to be traded, prior to free agency, transferring Bird Rights to the acquiring team which would then be able to offer the larger raises and an extra year. This, of course, is the essence of Howard’s request that the Magic deal him to one of his preferred destinations – reportedly New Jersey or Dallas – before this year’s March 15th trade deadline.
Will the new rules be sufficient to keep superstars like Howard, who have expressed a strong desire to relocate, with their current teams?
Whether the Magic front office feels comfortable enough to press its advantages at the risk of losing Howard without compensation if he simply signs elsewhere – and how Howard’s camp would then respond, as a real measure of how strongly Howard values a change of scenery over financial security – will answer the question in this case.
Jerry West stated recently that if he found himself in the middle of such a dilemma, he would opt to try calling the player’s bluff.
“If I were an executive on a team where a player says he’s going to leave, let him leave,” West said.
Otis Smith, general manager of the Magic, might agree with West.
“He can still walk, but with a $30 million haircut,” Smith said of Howard.
It’s difficult to say, of course, whether Smith is truly prepared to follow this course of action or is simply posturing.
Below are the actual salary figures of the free-agent contract that the Magic can offer Howard compared to any other team, like the Nets or Mavericks, both of which project to have the available salary cap room to sign Howard outright this coming offseason.
Such a maximum-salary contract offer from Orlando would be $29.8 million larger than any other in total, but over the same four years, the difference is just $5.1M. Said another way, approximately 83% of Orlando’s financial edge comes from the extra fifth season, with the rest a product of the larger annual raises over the first four years.
The lion’s share of Orlando’s leverage could be decided by how confident Howard is in earning a maximum-salary contract in the season after his contract with New Jersey or Dallas would expire. Howard would be 31-and-one-half years of age when he went back on the free-agent market again (if he did not extend his contract before then, which certainly should not be taken as a given).
The first year of Howard's second contract with a new team, otherwise known as Year 5 if he remains with the Magic, would be no less than $21,741,334.
Orlando’s Free-Agent Max Offer to Howard
Year 1: $18,996,359
Year 2: $20,421,086
Year 3: $21,845,813
Year 4: $23,270,540
Year 5: $24,695,267
Other Teams’ Free-Agent Max Offer to Howard
Year 1: $18,996,359
Year 2: $19,566,250
Year 3: $20,136,141
Year 4: $20,706,032
Feb 21, 2012 10:22 AM EST
Rick Carlisle is pleased with Lamar Odom’s play over the last 15 games.
"His field-goal percentage is down, but if you go back and look at it the last 15 games since he’s really gotten into shape, my bet would be that it’s significantly higher than that," Carlisle said. "I’m basing what I’m saying on the last 15 games because, look, his summer was rough, he wasn’t in shape when he got here, all that’s been documented. What I can talk to you about is what I’ve seen and I saw the first 15 games and I’ve seen the last 16 or whatever it’s been, and there’s been marked improvement.
Odom is shooting 36.1 percent from floor, 27.5 percent from 3-point range and 57.7 percent from the free throw line.
"I would love for Lamar to be the kind of high-impact player that he is supposedly advertised as being. But the truth is, he has been a consistent player," Carlisle said after Odom went 2-of-8 for four points in the Mavs' 89-73 win against the Celtics. "His stats have been very consistent and based on his per-36 minutes-a-game stats, his last 15 games are right pretty much on par with his career. And so I think we’re really looking for spectacular things from him on a night-in, night-out basis; that’s not who he is.
"But, if we’re looking for a guy that’s going to dazzle on a night-in, night-out basis with gaudy stats and a bunch of fancy stuff, that’s not who he is as a player and that’s not who he’s been as a player."
Feb 21, 2012 10:17 AM EST
The Mavericks have reduced their optimism surrounding Rodrigue Beuabois.
Sources say the team is willing to trade Beaubois before the deadline or in the summer.
Beaubois has been unable to adjust to the point guard position.
Dallas Mavericks Archives
Delonte West had pins inserted to stabilize his fractured ring finger.
Delonte West suffered a fracture-dislocation of his ring finger.
Feb 14, 2012 | ESPNDallas.com
Mark Cuban believes Shawn Marion deserves serious consideration as a Defensive Player of the Year candidate.
The Mavericks have been closely monitoring the minutes of Jason Kidd and Dirk Nowitzki.
Rick Carlisle has been impressed with Ricky Rubio's playmaking ability.
The NBA announced the reserves for the 2012 All-Star Game on Thursday.
In an attempt to quickly recover from a strained calf, Jason Kidd has been utilizing cryotherapy.
Dirk Nowitzki is averaging 16.4 points and 8.0 rebounds since sitting out four games to rehabilitate his knee.
Dirk Nowitzki is shooting 28.2 percent over his last three games.
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