Mavs 'Nothing' Trade And Early-Morn Notes
GREG SMITH DEAL
The Dallas Mavericks will acquire minimum-wage center/forward Greg Smith in a trade with the Bulls, an NBA source confirms, adding that Dallas has given up "nothing'' in the swap.
There are ways to figuratively trade "nothing'' to a team (like a "prospect'' who isn't really a prospect or $75,000 cash or a second-rounder) and that information will be more available once the deal is finalized.
But finality won't come until at least Monday, and maybe longer. More will be known about Dallas' cap situation at 10:59 p.m. Sunday (Texas time) when Houston makes its decision to match or release Chandler Parsons to the Mavs. Other cap-related moves can include pursuit of other free agents (that list is increasingly highlighted by Indiana's oft-kilter young standout Lance Stephenson) or an amnesty bid on likely Chicago releasee Carlos Boozer.
Eventually, though, the 6-foot-10, 250-pound Smith will be Mavs property and could fill a role as a backup 4/5. He averaged 5.3 points and 4.1 rebounds in 14.4 minutes per game over the last three seasons with Houston, where he was at times a part-time starter. A knee problem is tied to the Rockets' eventual release of the former Fresno State player, 23, who was signed by the Bulls this spring.
Chicago dumped him and his $948,163 salary for cap space to pursue Pau Gasol. Now Smith is a candidate to get time behind Dirk and Tyson Chandler. DeJuan Blair may leave for a better deal than Dallas can offer. Brandan Wright is definitely in the rotation and Bernard James or ummer-league Ivan Johnson could stick, too.
Chris "Birdman'' Andersen and 7-footer Jason Smith are other names on Dallas long backup-big wishlist.
More on Smith coming up in Sunday Morning Mavs Donuts.
This will require more research, but briefly, for now: Mavs sources tell DB.com there will be interest there assuming Chicago amnesties Carlos Boozer. The same format worked nicely a couple of years ago for the Mavs and Elton Brand, you'll recall.
But those same sources caution us "cap room" and Boozer, likely a reminder that they have to have (and use) cap room to claim Boozer. So it's hard to determine at this time whether he works as an amnesty claim if Parsons gets matched, and if not whether the Mavs have much (or any?) cap room to bid with.
Mixed in here: Nobody knows the Mavs' EXACT balance. They may have a few dollars, and it may turn out wise that they haven't submitted the Devin and Dirk deals so other teams can't read the hand they're playing with if indeed they bid on the power forward.
LANCE AND MONEY
The Mavs entered free-agency summer shopping with “10 viable options’’ that would be regarded as successful. And GM Donnie Nelson says, 'We’ve got a lot of greaseboards with lots of different scenarios.' There is some clarity on two of those scenarios: Chandler Parsons, who Dallas covets but must wait on pending a Rockets’ decision whether to match his offer sheet; and Lance Stephenson, the off-kilter Pacers standout who is moving up Dallas’ list of desireables with a bullet.
The Rockets have until 10:59 p.m. CT Sunday to decide whether to exercise their right to match the three-year, $46-million offer sheet Parsons signed with the Mavs. Anybody pretending to know Houston’s plan here is fibbing.
"No," said Mavs owner Mark Cuban when asked if he knew. "It's just a waiting game.’’
But while the Mavs wait, they visit with replacement prospects in case Parsons is matched. Once a lower-rung idea, the concept of adding Stephenson is one Cuban is now talking about openly.
"We're exploring a lot of options, a lot of different people," Cuban said. "Hopefully the Rockets won't match and we'll have Chandler and that changes what we're able to do, but Lance is certainly on the list."
A source tells us Dallas is in touch with the controversial Stephenson but has yet to discuss with him contract parameters.
If Parsons comes to Dallas, all of the Mavs’ $15 million in cap room is essentially eaten up. Stephenson would only require part of that money.
"It wouldn't be a single player," Cuban said. “It would have to be multiple players. … (People) recognize that (Dallas is) going to be a spender. If they match, we've got money to spend."
It won't be spent on Trevor Ariza, of course. He's going to Houston, further clouding their plans. And it won't be Paul Pierce, who is reportedly signing a two-year, $11-million contract with the Wizards, where he'll replace Ariza. Oh, and while Dallas wants to keep him alive, maybe you should prep to cross Luol Deng off the list as Miami is closing in.
Yes, the Mavs have money to spend. They just need to find ways to do so.