DALLAS — The Dallas Mavericks didn’t beat the Houston Rockets to this summer’s most precious free agent commodity.However, they were able to snatch away one of the Rockets’ prized possessions.On Monday, the Mavs hired Gersson Rosas — one of the most important executives in the Rockets’ organization — as their new general manager. Rosas, 35, was in an executive position with the Rockets and was instrumental in helping Houston acquire Chandler Parsons, James Harden, Jeremy Lin, Omer Asik and Dwight Howard over the past three summers.Rosas will report directly to Donnie Nelson, who has relinquished his general manager’s title and will remain as the Mavs’ president of basketball operation. Born in Bogota, Colombia, Rosas has become the top-ranked Hispanic front office executive in the NBA.Nelson was adamant that the Mavs hire Rosas away from the Rockets, who won a fierce battle with Dallas this month for Howard. Nelson was given the OK by owner Mark Cuban to pursue Rosas, who is considered one of the youngest and brightest executives in the NBA.“Donnie is a long-time admirer of Gersson’s work and has spoken frequently about his desire to one day bring him to the Mavs organization,” coach Rick Carlisle said. “I commend Donnie and Mark for being able to recruit him to Dallas.”Rosas spent the first part of this summer assisting Rockets GM Daryl Morey land Howard.After starting as an intern with the Rockets nine years ago, Rosas worked his way up to executive vice president of basketball operations. He also served as the Rockets’ director of player personnel, video coordinator and director of scouting.Rosas also was the general manager of the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, which is the Rockets’ NBA Development League squad. In four seasons with Rosas as GM, the Vipers won two D-League titles and were runners-up once.The Mavs had been searching for a way to enhance their basketball operations and will hand Rosas the reins to reshape the free agency and scouting department, and their college and pro departments.“I met with Gersson for several hours in Las Vegas last week and was extremely impressed with his personality and overall depth of basketball knowledge,” Carlisle said. “After our meeting I understood Donnie’s enthusiasm about him and knew this move would strengthen our organization tremendously.“I look forward to working closely with Mark, Donnie and Gersson as we continue to rebuild a championship team.”Mavs deal CalathesThoroughly satisfied with the play of point guard Gal Mekel in last week’s Las Vegas Summer League, the Mavs traded the draft rights of Nick Calathes to the Memphis Grizzles for a 2016 second-round draft pick.Calathes, 24, was taken with the 45th overall pick of the 2009 NBA Draft. But he’s never played in the NBA, and was on teams in Greece and Russia since he left Florida after becoming a first-team all-Southeastern Conference pick in 2009.In 17 Eurocup games this past season, Calathes averaged 12.9 points, 5.9 rebounds and 6.6 assists per game. He also was the Eurocup Most Valuable Player.
Dwain Price, 817-390-7760 Twitter: @dwainprice