OKLAHOMA CITY – The NBA trading deadline came and went Thursday without the Dallas Mavericks making a move.
But that’s only a mild surprise.
While the Mavs fielded calls and made calls on prospective trade possibilities – which is their annual custom – they failed to pull the trigger on any deals.
However, less than 24 hours before the trade deadline, the Mavs reached out and signed free agent center/power forward Amar’e Stoudemire to a prorated contract for the remainder of this season worth $485,670. Stoudemire (6-10, 245) won’t play in tonight’s game at Oklahoma City and Friday’s home game against Houston, but the Mavs are hopeful he’ll be ready to play Sunday against Charlotte.
"He’s a terrific player and he has been for over a decade,’’ coach Rick Carlisle said. "This was an opportunity for us to shore up a position that needs some help, and so we’re very fortunate to have him.’’
Stoudemire averaged 12 points and 6.8 rebounds in 24 minutes per game while playing in 36 contests for the New York Knicks this season. And while the Mavs insist that he’s fine physically – he’s had a laundry list of health problems – that one shootaround Stoudemire went through today is not enough to convince the Mavs that he’s ready to play against the Thunder.
"We need this time to get him integrated, get him acclimated,’’ Carlisle said. "He was not eligible to do anything on the floor until yesterday afternoon at 4 o’clock, and we were already at the airport and done with practice.
"So we’re going to point toward Sunday. It’s not 100 percent sure, but that’s our goal and we look forward to getting him involved."
In addition to acquiring Stoudemire, the Mavs facilitated their need for a point guard when, on Dec. 18, they acquired Rajon Rondo in a trade with the Boston Celtics.