In owner Mark Cuban’s estimation, the only thing keeping the Dallas Mavericks from being among the NBA’s elite teams is the acquisition of an elite player in his prime.
But with the Mavs unable to land a big fish in free agency last summer, they loaded up on the next best thing.
That was the goal — have guys that may not put you over the top right off the bat but were team players that you could add to and hopefully other guys would want to play with.
Mavericks owner Mark Cuban
“When we looked at this past summer, we had Chandler [Parsons], we added Wesley [Matthews], we added [Deron Williams], guys that are 32, 30, 28, 29, 30,” Cuban said. “So the hope was guys that we could add to, and that was the goal — have guys that may not put you over the top right off the bat but were team players that you could add to and hopefully other guys would want to play with.”
“So the mission was let’s just take what we have, add the players that we think — if we were to get the one transformational guy — would these be guys that we would add to play around with, and so that was the thought process.”
But Cuban knows that glue guys don’t guarantee a marquee player.
“It doesn’t mean anybody is going to say yes,” he said. “But I think we’ve got a good foundation.”
Cuban is banking on the glue guys being the attraction. A long run in the upcoming playoffs also could help.
If you don’t have those glue guys or the guys around them that are good and getting better, then you’re not going to get those transformational guys.
Cuban said: “If you don’t have those glue guys or the guys around them that are good and getting better, then you’re not going to get those transformational guys.”
As far as this year’s team goes, Cuban pointed out the number of “self-inflicted wounds.” Some of those wounds are buried in a 4-10 record in games decided by three points or less.
“The good news is there are a lot of self-inflicted wounds going on in the conference,” Cuban said. “So we still have every opportunity in front of us. We’ve just got to get it done.”
Indiana rookie Myles Turner had a happy homecoming Saturday as the Pacers defeated the Mavericks 112-105 at American Airlines Center.
It was Myles’ first NBA game in North Texas since the Pacers made him the 11th overall pick of last summer’s NBA Draft. The Euless Trinity graduate got to show almost 100 friends and family members who came out to see him just how far he’s progressed this season.
I wanted to come back home and make sure I played well in front of the people that supported me my entire career.
Pacers rookie and Euless Trinity grad Myles Turner
“This was a big deal to me,” Turner said. “I wanted to come back home and make sure I played well in front of the people that supported me my entire career. So, yeah, this was circled on my calendar.”
Turner finished with 15 points on 5-of-9 shooting with seven rebounds in 19 minutes.
“We’re trying to make a serious playoff push right now,” Turner said. “So the fact that we could come in here and take care of business, it was great.”
Cuban praises Holt
Cuban has a lot of respect for Peter Holt. So when the chairman and CEO of the San Antonio Spurs surprisingly retired earlier this week, Cuban was taken aback.
“Peter’s a legend,” Cuban said. “I look up to him in a lot of different ways, not just for his success, but his approach and temperament and what he’s done for the NBA.
“I just hope he’s OK and there’s no other reasons. But Peter is first class in every way.”
Under Holt, the Spurs won five NBA titles and advanced to the postseason 19 years in a row.