The 2019 free agency period hasn’t gone the way many Mavs fans hoped. While the team did re-up Kristaps Porzingis to a 5 year, $158 million max contract, they’ve largely focused on resigning their own free agents beyond that, with a returning Seth Curry, Boban Marjanovic, and the newly acquired Delon Wright being the exceptions to date. With Wright’s three-year, $29 million contract, he becomes the ninth Maverick locked down for at least the next three seasons, making it clear that front office’s mission is to cultivate continuity, as Brad Townsend pointed out a couple of days ago when speaking on the possibility then of signing Danny Green.
With Finney-Smith agreement, Mavs will have 7 players on contracts of 3 years or longer. Along with their desire to add Danny Green and probably someone else, they are quietly establishing contunuity, a long-missing intangible since the ‘11 title-team breakup.
— Brad Townsend (@townbrad) July 2, 2019
Actually miscounted on this earlier, apologies. Mavs have 8 players under contract for 3-plus years. https://t.co/Zv0wqNb24f
— Brad Townsend (@townbrad) July 3, 2019
Aside from a few faces, the Mavericks roster has seen routine overhauls since the summer of 2011. Since that time, excluding Dirk, Devin Harris is the longest tenured Maverick with six seasons spread across two stints. Just behind him are J.J. Barea and Dwight Powell with five years respectively. Such frequent churning of a roster serves to undermine the potential development of chemistry and continuity, both of which helped make the 2010-11 Mavericks roster so special.
While there are still many questions for Dallas to answer this offseason, having more consistency within the locker room and on the court will only help them toward their vision for the future. Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis are the unquestioned pillars of the franchise but in lieu of another star or two, they’ll still require a strong bench and role players behind them. The foundation for this may already be in place, however.
Prior to J.J. Barea’s Achilles injury last season, the Mavericks had one of the best benches in the league. And while Barea’s return to form certainly isn’t a foregone conclusion given his age, his role, along with Dorian Finney-Smith, Dwight Powell, and Maxi Kleber should help. Adding Curry and Boban to that unit only strengthens it, while Wright can slot right into the starting lineup.
With so many cost-effective, longer term contracts at their disposal, Dallas now has the luxury of both building talented roster and maintaining crucial flexibility via depth and its many tradable contracts. So while it’s unlikely all nine players are on the roster three years from now, it does provide much of the Mavs roster the chance to grow and gel like few other rosters in Dallas’s post-championship era.
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