An Australian newspaper published a story Wednesday that stated that Dallas Mavericks center Andrew Bogut wants to be traded.
After Thursday’s shootaround at American Airlines Center, Bogut said the story isn’t true. Bogut said that his comments during an interview with an an Australian radio station were taken out of content.
“You do an interview on Australian radio, which people didn’t even listen to, and then a journalist takes the quotes subjectively out of that interview and writes an article saying I want out,” Bogut said. “What do you want me to say? Listen to the actual interview.”
Not one to mince words, Bogut said: “I very much highly doubt I’ll be back here next season just because I have an expiring contract, I’m a free agent. I just don’t see it.
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“I haven’t asked for a trade, but I know in this league with [the Mavs being] 11-24 — and I was being honest — there’s a chance I can get traded. That turned out into a headline that said Bogut Wants Out, which is false.”
I very much highly doubt I’ll be back here next season just because I have an expiring contract, I’m a free agent. I just don’t see it.
Mavericks center Andrew Bogut
The Mavs acquired Bogut and his expiring $11 million contract last summer in a trade with the Golden State Warriors. And the 11-year veteran is adamant that he doesn’t want to get traded.
“I have not asked to be traded,” Bogut said. “Do I want to be traded?
“Look, if there’s an opportunity to go somewhere and they want to do it, I’m not going to beg them to not trade me. But I have not gone to the office and asked for a trade. That’s probably the best answer I can give you.”
Coach Rick Carlisle said he can see a scenario where the Mavs re-sign Bogut. But he said that’s up to owner Mark Cuban and Donnie Nelson, the team’s president of basketball operations.
“It’s a dynamic business and I’m not certain what’s going to happen,” Carlisle said. “But I’ve had some good talks with [Bogut] recently and I know he likes it here and my understanding was that he did not want to get traded.
You do an interview on Australian radio, which people didn’t even listen to, and then a journalist takes the quotes subjectively out of that interview and writes an article saying I want out. What do you want me to say? Listen to the actual interview.
“But look, we’re all big boys, we’ve been in this a long time, and part of the business is trades do happen. But I don’t know anything about a trade. That’s a Donnie-Mark conversation. It’s not a RC conversation.”
The 7-foot Bogut averages 3.3 points and a team-high 9.7 rebounds this season while struggling through injuries. And while he has recently been removed from the starting lineup, Bogut likes playing for the Mavs.
“There’s some personal reasons as to why I’d like to stay here, which people don’t know about,” Bogut said. “I said thankfully I’m a free agent at the end of the season, meaning that it’s the first time in my career I can actually choose where I want to go.”
But because Bogut wasn’t offered an extension by the Mavs — a business practice which Cuban doesn’t get involved with — he thinks the Mavs will head in another direction.
“I had a chance to sign an extension here, which wasn’t discussed by either party,” Bogut said. “That’s the honest truth.
The Mavs eventually have to start rebuilding, too. There’s no point bringing back a 33-year old center if you’re in rebuild mode.
“If you take all that into account it’s unlikely that I’ll be here next season. If people take offense to that, so be it, but that’s the honest truth with the way this league is. That’s how it turned into me saying I want out, and blah, blah, blah. I can’t control those headlines.”
Bogut said he can’t envision the Mavs re-signing him.
“I mean if you’re asking me today and I have to put my house on it, I’d say no, just because if there was an opportunity for me to come back there would have been at least extension talks, which I’m not bitter about, I’m not mad about,” Bogut said. “That’s just the reality of it, that’s the writing on the wall.
“The Mavs eventually have to start rebuilding, too. There’s no point bringing back a 33-year old center if you’re in rebuild mode.”
Carlisle, though, likes what he’s gotten this season from Bogut.
“He’s one of our best players, he’s one of the most productive players,” Carlisle said. “I have no knowledge of anything having to do with trades, so I can’t comment on that.
“In my conversations with Donnie about it, we’ve talked about the possibility of re-signing him as a real possibility. I know the kind of impact that he has on our team.”
As with all of his players, Carlisle knows Bogut is disappointed in the Mavs’ record.
“The fact that he’s not starting is really kind of an outlier type situation,” Carlisle said. “But he’s extremely productive whether he starts or doesn’t start. He’s that good a player.”
But not even Carlisle knows if Bogut will be with the Mavs next season.
“I don’t know what’s going to happen,” Carlisle said. “But I don’t know where all this is coming from either.”
Told that the Bogut questions stemmed from an interview he did on an Australian radio station, Carlisle said: “I didn’t happen to tune into that.”
The No. 1 overall pick by the Milwaukee Bucks in the 2005 NBA Draft, Bogut is eager to become a free agent for the first time in his career.
“I’ve signed two extensions since my rookie year, so it’s the first time I can be kind of in the driver’s seat of where I want to play, instead of being traded,” he said.
But the newspaper story’s claim that he has demanded a trade still stings Bogut.
“It’s a headline grabber, it’s gotten you guys’ attention, everyone’s attention, fans’ attention,” he said. “But if people want to take it their own way they can.
“It’s been a tough season for everybody involved. But it’s far from the truth that I’ve gone to management and asked for a trade.”