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Deep Breaths

Ok, so we have all had a few days to sit on the Draft a little bit.  For those who participated in the open thread on draft night, I must say we all came away really disappointed on the way things turned out. 

But were we disappointed because of our 51st pick in Foster, or because we had been fed a bunch of malarkey from various sources over the past month, about us moving up in the draft, and getting younger at no costs.  And creditable sources at that, especially one from our owner who has historically pulled through with his wallet without thinking twice.

And as far as the draft picks, there is no question there is risk there, but in the NBA, there is always the option to buy low first round draft picks, so we weren't as concerned there.

The harshest critics of the Kidd trade are quick to point out, that not only did we trade away youth for a 35 year old, but that we prevented ourselves from re-building and bringing up some new guys through the draft, because we lost 2, not one, but 2 first rounder’s.  This comment from Cuban above, led me (among others I believe also) to not worry about that aspect of the trade, because it would not be a "concern" or even a problem.  That he would pull through.

Do I understand that the price has to be right, and to not jump the gun on something just because we can?  Sure I do.  But as far as I can tell, it looks as though pieces were in place for us to go after CDR, Chalmers, Walker, and Arthur, and we didn’t for whatever reason, except that we know teams were asking for "Crazy Money".  Boston made it happen with Walker, the Heat got it done with Chalmers, and the Blazers, Rockets and Memphis all got it done with Arthur.  Why could Dallas not make it happen with any of these guys?

I honestly believe the FO was involved in talks with teams, but what was honestly the hold up?  Was it money?  Were other deals/trades being focused on at the time, and not the purchase of picks, but in the end those fell through?  I hate to even bring this up, but one does have to ask: is Cuban’s possible acquisition of the Cub’s making him think twice about throwing his wallet around for his Mavs team?

If I had to grade our draft purely on our pick at 51, the Mavs picking up Foster and not some no-name Euro guy alone deserves an A.  Picking him up is NOT the reason though we see trouble coming from the Mavs.  Because the Mavs hands are tied with the Salary cap right now, and it looks as though we will use the full MLE on Diop, the Draft was the one way Cuban could use his wallet to bring in good, youthful talent, that this team could build around.  Is it a risk?  Sure it is.  But its one that you would think Cuban would take, given the state of his team right now… which is that its too old.

We dont stand alone on feeelings about the poor choices made during the draft either though.  Yahoo, ESPN, and SI have all given the Mavs the worst possible grades they could give, for their draft inactivity.  Not that I really care what they think, no one ever gives us a chance, but at least I have some backing on my frustrations with our draft.

So now that youth has passed us up, and we will more than likely use all our MLE on Diop, the rest of our roster essentially rests on (assuming no trades are made) the Summer guys below and the Vet min guys (Juawan howards, Magloires, etc.) that we will have to suffer watching this year.  That is unless the new Salary cap rises to well over 100 million per year. 

So here we are again, Dirks a year older and on the decline of his prime,  Kidd a year older and a step slower, Josh is coming in this year not knowing if the Walker version of himself or the ’06-’07 Josh will come back, we still don’t have a good 2 guard, and we still have no bench.

How is this scenario any different than last year?  Besides Kidd?  Not much.  I just would like to hope that the Mavs are learning from their mistakes is all.  Its ok to make mistakes, you cant expect perfection from them, but as a fan, you would like to hope two things from the Front Office:

  1. They put the teams best interest first, in doing whatever it takes with in their capabilities to win.
  2. Mistakes will be made, and we (fans) will need to get over that.  But learn from them.

[Note by Toddy, 06/28/08 3:11 PM MDT ] Word has it, that Donnie Nelson went on the Norm Hitzges show recently after the draft, and said that any offers the Mavs looked at that would have landed them any pick below the 25 threshold, would have required them to have given up not only 3 million dollars, but also 3 future picks as well.  If this is to be true, we were probably wise in not pulling the trigger on anything below 25, but it does not let them off the hook for anything above that the 25th pick.  Besides, does anyone else remember Charlotte giving up this much to Denver for their pick they got at 20?

Maybe its just me, but what they are saying post draft just isnt adding up.