Editor's Note: Front-paged for optimism... something we need.
Honestly I never got caught up in the Deron Williams fervor. Don't really know why, just didn't. So sue me..haha. With Steve Nash going to the Lakers, and Kidd going to the Knicks, it looks like Dallas isn't going to sign any of the "top FA's". To that point I have been looking at the Roster as if Mavericks don't get anyone in FA, and honestly I am optimistic. Of course I am that way naturally about all "my teams" but still.
So where does Dallas go from here, well they currently have 44 million currently tied up in the roster. This is before any draft picks sign, and any other moves in FA are made. As Jammasterj pointed out Here, Dallas currently stands around 9 million under the cap, which should allow Dallas to make a few more moves in FA. However untill those move are done I want to look at the roster as it stands. Follow me past the jump for more information.
Here is the Roster as it stands now in(listed in terms of PER from last year):
So how does this roster become a depth chart? Like this:
PG: Rodrique Beaubois(15.9)
SG: Vince Carter(13.6)
SF: Shawn Marion(15.0)
PF: Dirk Nowizki(21.8)
C: Brendan Haywood(12.9)
"6th Man: Brandan Wright(21.7)
G: Dominique Jones(11.9), Jared Cunningham
F: Jae Crowder
C: Bernard James
Now I don't know about you, but I actually like this roster. As I understand it, the rookies that Dallas has in Crowder, Cunningham, and James are all fairly "polished", considering they are rookies, and should be serviceable in the short term, while being potentially pretty good in the future. So lets look at some lineups shall we?
I have already given my "standard" starting line up above so lets just look at some "specialty lineups" specifically the "big" Lineup, the "small" lineup, the 3 guard lineup and as always the "young guns" lineup
The Big Lineup:
PG-Jared Cunningham/Dominique Jones
SG- Shawn Marion
SF- Brandan Wright
PF- Dirk Nowitzki
C- Brendan Haywood
@ 6'4" 195 and 6'5" 215 Cunningham and Jones (respectfully) are both on the larger side for PG's, yet both are considered pretty good defenders, though both need work on the offensive side
Marion is arguably the most versatile player on the Squad defensive wise, but like the previous two, is no longer considered an offensive "threat".
Brendan Haywood, is well, Brendan Haywood. We all know what he is at this point.
Wright and Dirk on the other hand are almost complete opposites of the previous players. Very productive Offensive wise(as indicated by their 21+ season PER's) However they are lacking on the defensive side. this lineup will rise/Fall with the PG position. If DoJo /CJ can become decent offensive threat's, and/or great passers, this could be a formidible line up, if not, then It will be a "defensive" set used mostly late in games.
The Small Lineup:
SF- Vince Carter
PF- Shawn Marion
C- Branden Wright
With the "biggest player" being Brandan Wright @ 6' 10 210, I am not sure if Dallas will run this lineup much, that being said, With Beaubois, Carter, and Wright, this should be a pretty good Offensive lineup, especially considering they are with out Dirk. Also with MArion and Cunningham Dallas still has one elite Defender in Marion, and another potentially solid one in Cunningham. Also Beaubois is somewhat underrated as a Defender, though Neither Carter or Wright are known for their Defensive Prowess. This lineup though could be a huge key for Dallas, because if it is successful, the fact that it is without Dirk could pay off huge.
The 3 Guard Lineup
PG- Rodrique Beaubois
PF- Dirk Nowitzki
C- Brandan Wright
This is the first lineup with Shawn Marion. However I think that this could be Dallas most efficient Offensive lineup. With Dirk on the floor, you create the correct "spacing" and Wright showcased his offensive repertoire last year. Defensive wise though is another story. That being said, Dallas mostly uses a "Zone Defense" with this lineup, and Carter, Dirk and Wright are pretty good in that regard. However, The strength of this lineup will be it's offense.
The "Young Guns" Lineup:
PG- Rodrique Beaubois/Dominique Jones
SG- Dominique Jones/Jared Cunningham
SF- Jae Crowder
PF- Brandan Wright
C- Bernard James
I admit I am intrigued by this lineup, All three draft picks (and DoJo) are thought to be tough, athletic Defenders( a key weakness last year), that simply need to work on their offensive skill sets. Beaubois is arguably the most "Complete" player, while Wright needs to work on his Defense. That being said, I don't think we will see this lineup much, though it depends on is Dallas does bring any FA's in.
I do want to make a point. I don't think Dallas amnesties Haywood this year. At this point in FA, there really isn't much point to do so, as Dallas has enough cap space to get enough player to Fill out the roster. I can see Dallas bringing back West, and maybe another player, but really that is it. If that is Happens look for West to get the "starting nod @ PG, with Beaubois becoming the "6th man".
I also want to note that a key TC Battle will be Cunningham vs Jones. Both are similar players at this point, though I think Cunningham has the higher ceiling at this point(as much as that pains me to say). I have always liked DoJo, but I could see Cunningham beating him out for the backup SG/PG role behind Carter and Beaubois. However Jones does have a couple more years experience in the Offense which may give him an advantage.
Another Battle will be Carter and Crowder at the Backup SF position. Like Cunningham and Jones they are similarly sized, but in terms of "skillset" they are polar opposites. Crowder is young athletic and considered a good defender coming out of College, while Carter, isn't known for his Defense, but is still capable of athletic plays on Offense. Should be interesting to say the least, seeing where Dallas goes with this.
So what do you guys think? are you as optimistic as I am? Or has the lack of FA moves by Dallas simply driven you to be pessimistic?