Well it is almost playoff time...The time where Jason Terry goes cold, Carlise refuses to play anyone younger than 30 years old( except for JJ Berea), and the Mavericks to get stomped out of the First round again. Would I like for them to get back to the Finals? Hell yeah! Do I think they have a Shot? Yeah, probably the same shot as I have of Winning the Lottery, assuming I played it that is. Yet My purpose is not to Bash the Mavericks. Actually I want to offer up some hope, that maybe Dallas Will get there with in Dirk's playing years.
What I want to do is to look forward to next year, and see what the Roster may look like, before the teams start trading players and what not...Now this will include a few resigns, But overall the roster will shrink slightly.
Now here is the Dallas Roster as it stands now(Now the players in Bold are "expiring", thus will be a free agent after this year. The player that will be "expiring" next year are in Italics):
So Who will Dallas resign? Well I can confidently say Chandler will be resigned. He has easily been Dallas' MVP through out this year(outside of Dirk of course). I think that Peja May be resigned as well. He can play 2-3 positions, and is still one of the better "shooters" in the game. As for JJ, Stevenson,and Cardinal, I think that JJ will want too much to keep, Stevenson, though somewhat versatile, probably won't be resigned(unless it is for League minimum), and Cardinal is simply replaced by Peja.
That leaves Butler. He is kinda hard to figure out. I honestly wouldn't mind him back, as he can play both the SF and SG positions, is a very good defender, and before his injury was getting roughly 15 points pg. The main issue is that A. Like most of the current Squad Butler is a "Jump Shooter" on a Team full of them, and B. is over 30 years old. However his Positives do mitigate those "faults", so If he would take a "reasonable" deal, like 4-6 million for 3-4 years, then I would resign him.
So Lets assume that Peja, Butler, and Chandler are all resigned. This is what the Roster looks like:
PG- Jason Kidd, JJ Berea, Rodrigue Beaubois
SG- DeShawn Stevenson, Jason Terry, Dominique Jones
SF- Corey Brewster,Shawn Marion, Caron Butler
PF- Dirk Nowitzki, Peja Stojakovic, Brian Cardinal
C- Tyson Chandler, Brendan Haywood, Ian Mahinmi
That means that Dallas would be(pre draft/Free agency) 12 players deep, with a good mix of "slashers" in Beaubois and Jones, and Jumpers,with Terry, Butler and Peja. You could say that Marion and Brewster are "Slashers" due to the fact that both are good at getting to the rim, but they do it in an unusual way. They are "off-ball slashers" that go to the rim while the "D" is focused on the ball handler.
Now I what to look at the various Lineups that Dallas could use with this Roster(starters would be listed first):
SG-Butler, Terry, Jones
PF- Dirk, Peja
C-Chandler, Haywood, Mahinmi
This is the Main starting lineup next year. This puts your Best Defensive players on the floor from the Beginning of the game. Terry and Kidd become the Sixth man in effect as they would probably sub in at the same time. At this point Butler would move to SF, with Marion going either to the bench or to the PF position depending on the Matchup.
Small Line up (3- guard)
This would be a intriguing line up, as it puts Beaubois and Jones who are both "on Ball Slashers" on the Floor together. This would combine very nicely with Dirk, Peja and Kidd as all three are 3pt threats, with both Beaubois and Jones being good at the" Penetrate and Pass Offense". Now the main issue with this would be Defense, as Both Dirk and Peja are not known for their "D". However Kidd is an underrated defender and Beaubois along with Jones are very active on the Defensive end.
Here would be an Alternate "3-guard" line up:
This Line up would take full advantage of Kidd's 'court awareness" by utilizing both Brewster and Marion in "off Ball Slashing", with Kidd's and Terry 3pt ability opening up lanes. It also would have Better Defensive capabilities due to Kidd, Marion, Brewster and Mahinmi.
This Line up is all about Height. Kidd at 6-4, goes with Corey(6-9) Peja(6-10), Dirk(7-0) and Chandler(7-1) This Line up would be one of the Better rebounding Lineups in the League, as Chandler,Dirk and Kidd alone are averaging 20+ rpg. then factor in Brewster and Peja who in limited time this year are avg. 2.6(brewster and 2.2 Peja) and you have a lineup that is bringing in over 25 reb per game....
Now notice some thing about all these line ups... All of them are fairly balanced. They are all a good mix of "jumpers"and "Slashers" and any "O" and "D" deficiencies are balanced as well. This was deliberate, as this is what you need,if you go to far either way you become either the Knicks(all "O" no "D") or the Spurs(all "D" no "O").
Well Let me know what you guys think..I freely welcome comments and critiques. Just Wake me up if Dallas makes it past the First round OK? thanks!!!