The Mavs and the Point Guard Position

March 23, 2012; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Portland Trail Blazers point guard Raymond Felton (5) guards Los Angeles Lakers point guard Ramon Sessions (7) in the second half of the game at the Staples Center. Lakers won 103-96. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-US PRESSWIRE


With the biggest point guard draw in the 2012 NBA Free Agency period, Deron Williams, stating that he would resign with the Brooklyn Nets, the Mavs were sent reeling to execute plan B: sign Jason Kidd. Unfortunately for the Mavericks, Jason Kidd decided to leave the team and sign with the New York Knicks. The front office was not prepared for the chance of Kidd leaving, and the team is now stuck with combo guards such as Rodrigue Beaubois and Dominique Jones to start the point guard position. Mark Cuban is still betting on his plan that an all-star such as Chris Paul would come to Dallas next year, but as Deron Williams showed the Mavericks and Mavs fans, no plan is slated for success, even with every piece you need for the plan is perfect. The only option the Mavericks have is to sign a talented, but one year deal, point guard to keep the team's morale high if Cuban wants to bet the farm on an all-star.

A potential signing for the point guard spot is former Most Improved Player winner Aaron Brooks. Brooks recently has his qualifying offer revoked, making him an unrestricted free agent , due to the fact that the Phoenix Suns are going to sign Goran Dragic. The Mavericks have been linked to signing Brooks in the last two days. Aaron played in China last season, for the Guangdong Southern Tigers, signing early due to the NBA lockout. In Brooks' last season in the NBA, he split the season with Houston and the Suns. With around 19 minutes per game with the Suns in 2011, Brooks scored 9.6 points per game,has a little over 4 assists per game, and 1 steal each game. However, his shooting percentages are low: Brooks made 43% of all shots, and only 32.8% of all three point shots. With most NBA teams wary in the abilities of Brooks, a high offer for a one year contract, such as $6 million, may entice Brooks to join the Mavericks.

Another point guard that has been dealing with the Mavericks is Ramon Sessions. Sessions opted out of his final deal with the Lakers, worth $4.55 million. Sessions split time with the Cleveland Cavaliers and Los Angeles Lakers last season, averaging almost 13 points per game, 6 assists per game, and almost 4 rebounds per game. Sessions' shooting percentages are decent, with 47.9% of all shots made, and 48.6% of all 3 point shots made. Even his weaknesses are not that bad, which are a low rate of steals per game (less than 1) and an almost absent blocking rate (at .1 per game). A note must be made that Sessions' statistics for last year are above his career averages, and they may be a fluke to how Sessions really is. Unfortunately for the the Mavericks, a one year contract is the last resort for Sessions, and if the contract is for one year, Sessions expects the pay to be within the $7-8 million dollar mark. The price expected for Sessions may be too rich for the Mavericks; even with the history of overpaying just about any player who came over, the new collective bargaining agreement has caused the Mavs to second guess any and all contracts given out.

Raymond Felton is the last big name in which the Mavericks have been tied to. Felton wrapped up his two year, $16 million dollar deal that he originally signed with the New York Knicks Felton's best performance came which he was a member of the Knicks, scoring just over 17 points per game, dishing out 9 assists per game, and getting around 3.6 rebounds per game. Felton was dealt to the Denver Nuggets in the Carmelo Anthony blockbuster deal, where and finished his season there. Last season saw Raymond traded to the Portland Trailblazers, where his gameplay declined significantly, to scoring around 11.7 points per game, having 6.5 assists per game, and only getting 2.5 rebounds per game. Felton regressed to the level he was at during his rookie season with Charlotte in 2004-05, with Charlotte being an abysmal team that season. The only other team reported to have an interest in Felton at this time was the New York Knicks, where Felton shined as a point guard. With the Knicks signing Jason Kidd, singing Pablo Prigioni, and are reported to match an offer for Jeremy Lin, the chance of Felton returning to the Knicks is very low. Felton and the Mavericks know that he will not get a contract longer than two years after his disastrous season with Portland. If Raymond signs with the Mavericks, expect him to get a 1 year contract in the $5 to $6 million dollar range.

The remaining cache of point guards after Brooks, Sessions, and Felton are bargain bin players or players who are projected to decline, with the noticeable exception being Delonte West. West is looking for a significant increase in pay after signing last year for the veteran's minimum. While West performed well in the games he entered as a back up to Jason Kidd, West played mediocrity when he got the lion's share of the minutes. With Carlisle wanting to give more minutes to back ups such as Roddy Beaubois and Dominique Jones, there may not be a place for West, even though he's a good player. Other lower tier targets that are currently available include the likes of Randy Foye, Gilbert Arenas, Leonardo Barbosa, and C.J Watson. The Mavericks will need to hurry, though, since each day of free agency leads to more players finding a new team or resigning with their old team.

The Mavericks are trying to avoid long term salary once again to bring in another star next to Dirk. With the attempt to bring either Deron Williams or Dwight Howard failing, the Mavs need to hope that any forestalling of a rebuild does not lead to despair in the future, similar to the 2009-11 Phoenix teams with Nash and no one else to compliment him. Dirk may leave similar to Nash if the franchise does not act now to secure the most wins possible, and the point guard is one of the most important spots in the NBA, if not the most important. Whomever the Mavericks sign, they will need to right the ship for this season, and possibly any events in the near future.

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