Free agency is here, and the Dallas Mavericks wasted no time in making the organization’s moves known to the public.
So far, the Mavs have resigned Tim Hardaway Jr. and Boban Marjanovic. Then, they went out to sign Sterling Brown and Reggie Bullock, supplementing the roster with shooters and floor spacers in the hopes of making life easier on Luka Doncic.
Many wanted the Mavericks to go superstar hunting in this free agency window. They were one of four teams with ample cap space to sign a big name. However, that didn’t happen. Instead, general manager Nico Harrison and Dallas’ front office elected to bring back what worked from last season while adding two wing shooters in the processes.
Heading into free agency, Harrison preached constructing a team based on versatility. He often mentioned how head coach Jason Kidd wanted to play more defense and play faster than the Mavericks did last season. With the extra perimeter shooters on the roster, the Mavs now have multiple ways to beat opponents. They also can look to run the floor with steady knock-down shooters taking up space on the perimeter. And that is a welcomed sign for better days ahead for Dallas’ offense.
Here is what each player signed can offer the Mavericks heading into next season.
Tim Hardaway Jr, 4-year $74 million
This deal was a bit of a no-brainer for the Mavericks. It was made known that Hardaway was a top priority for the organization heading into free agency. And within seconds of the negotiation window opening, the two sides agreed on his return next season.
His contract breaks down to roughly $18 million per year. And compared to the price of some other perimeter scorers around the league, Hardaway’s deal comes at a great value for the team.
During the 2020-21 season, Hardway put together one of his best seasons as a pro. He averaged 16.6 points per game and shot 44.7 percent from the field and 39 percent from three. He turned into a go-to guy for the Mavericks during the team’s playoff run. And he developed an uncanny trust with Doncic on the floor.
Dallas bringing him back was not a question. And in Hardway’s return, he even seems to have given Dallas a bit of a ‘hometown discount.’
Reggie Bullock, 3-year $30.5 million
Keeping to the trend of defense and 3-point shooting, Dallas signed Bullock shortly after the Hardway deal.
In the 2020-21 season, Bullock averaged 10.9 points while shooting 44 percent from the field and 41 percent from three. He was a key contributor in returning playoff basketball to New York. His shooting gave Julius Randle space to operate. And his defensive versatility helped change the culture and defensive identity of a team that hadn’t produced a winning season in years.
Now, the Mavericks hope he can do the same alongside Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis. He fits the mold of a player that likes to play fast and defend. He will also have the luxury of easy catch-and-shoot threes with Doncic on the floor.
He may not be a superstar. But in Dallas, he can be a star in his role.
Sterling Brown, 2-year $6.2 million
Brown isn’t a household name. But for what he can add to a team, he’s worth the lower-end contract the Mavericks gave him.
On the Houston Rockets during the 2020-21 season, he averaged 8.2 points and 4.4 rebounds. He also shot 42 percent from three on four attempts a game.
Brown will, again, allow the Mavericks to play fast. He defends at a decent rate and spaces the floor for the stars on the floor. Interestingly enough, Brown played for the Milwaukee Bucks for three seasons. He spent one of those seasons (2017-18) under Kidd’s tutelage. In Dallas, he gets to play for his old coach again.
Brown’s deal is great value for the Mavericks. It pays for defense and 3-point shooting – two things that come at a premium in the modern-day NBA.
The Mavericks agreed to a contract with Marjanovic as well, however, that contract amount has yet to be disclosed by the team. Nonetheless, Marjanovic is a fan favorite and key locker room guy for the Mavericks. So, just because of how loved Marjanovic is by Dallas, he gets an A.
*As more Mavericks free agency news comes out this story will be updated accordingly*
Related Mavericks reading:
Feature image via Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports