Thursday, February 5, 2015

Mark Cuban needs to get serious and go all in on winning this year.

Disclaimer: I am not a Mark Cuban fan/apologist.  I think he is a very nice guy who is very cool in giving out financial advice, but hugely overrated as an owner.  He didn't part the waters and Dallas suddenly started winning.  IMO, He has actually been at the forefront for most of the team's poor decisions over the Cuban era  (a rant for another day).  Don Nelson and his son built this foundation and get little credit from Dallas fans.  Donnie Nelson?  Top 3-4 in the league at his job.

Anyway... I do have to give Cuban credit for correcting HIS foolish mistake and re-acquiring Tyson Chandler.  That gave the Mavs a shot to compete in the West in the post-season.  Acquiring Rajon Rondo was a great move by Little Nel and Cuban, but it leaves Dallas with a craptastic bench.

These two smart trades have cost Dallas two second round picks in 2015 (to New York) and a 2015 first rounder and 2016 second rounder (to Boston).  Dallas doesn't have a lot of exciting picks to trade at this point.

But something needs to be done.  You cannot count on Richard Jefferson and the like coming off the bench.

Come on now. 

A couple notable recent exceptions where Dallas was right (Vince Carter and Sean Marion) aside, Dallas has a history of overrating the value of washed up veterans in the Cuban era.

Dirk doesn't have a couple of years. This needs to be a title run year if you give a shit about Dirk.

So how do you manufacture depth?  You can scour the minor leagues  (Given his effort, attributes, and the fact the Mavs do not have a credible backup center, why exactly is Bernard James not on this roster?  Who exactly plays defense in the middle when Chandler goes out?), but I am sure the Mavs have done that. 

How else?  Mark Cuban spending money.

NBA trades allow slightly more money going out than what comes back.  125% plus $100K of the salary sent.

That means --- for example --- if Dallas wants to trade dustmop Raymond Felton,  a middling player at best with a year and a half left at 4.4 million a year, they could bring back a guy who makes $5.6M.

Run through the NBA rosters.  What player doesn't fit their current team's needs and makes $5.6 Million this year on a 3-5 to year deal and would provide Dallas good depth.  That's a deal that should be made.

Or maybe they have a guy making $4 Million a year over 3-5 years and a guy making a million for this season, but they both would fit here. That's a deal.

Or maybe Felton and a million guy for a guy who makes 7 Million+ a year.  That's a deal.

With Boston, New York, LA, and Philly all in the toilet and selling hard, I don't see why we can't improve 6 through 12 on the cheap.

Is it some odd cap space issue?  Or is Cuban just not willing to spend anymore money?  Is this the Michael Redd situation all over again, with Cuban taking half measures?  Is Cuban an owner who cares more about the bottom line than winning?

Dirk can sacrifice, but Cuban won't?  I am reminded again of the infamous "read my lips, 'money is no object' " proclamation by a young Mark Cuban.  Old Mark Cuban should sell the team to that guy if he doesn't have the stomach for it any more.

I don't get it.  I can only hope they are closing in on some deals.

Dallas has proven to be one of the least attractive cities for NBA free agents anyway.  Everyone but Mark Cuban seems to get this.  The only guys of note Dallas has signed were Monta Ellis, who was too toxic for most teams and has really turned his game around under Rick Carlisle, and Chandler Parsons, who was overpaid by a fortune in relation to his game in order to get him to Dallas.

Plus with Parsons, Ellis, Dirk, Chandler, and (hopefully) Rajon Rondo this team is not going to have space in the near future.

This is a win-now situation.

Dirk is greatness and has given up his own money to compete.  You cannot be more loyal than that.

You have spent the dirk money on your franchise value in the future.  That's nice but it is taking what he gave you for your interests.  You need to spend more money to help Dirk win now.

You have to do right by him. Fix this team.

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