In a lost season, tough decisions have to be made. Saturday night, the Dallas Mavericks made one of those decisions by requesting waivers on veteran big man Josh McRoberts.
McRoberts joined the Mavericks last summer via trade with the Miami Heat. The Heat got back A.J. Hammons, a second-round pick, and cash considerations. At the time, the move was viewed skeptically as McRoberts was sidelined with yet another injury. However, at least one person saw the potential of McRoberts. That person was me.
I fell in love with McRoberts’ game during his final season with the Charlotte Bobcats. There, he facilitated much of their offense as a point forward. His height allowed him to see over defenses and find his cutters with adept passing.
Beyond his ability to find teammates, McRoberts could create for himself. He could put the ball on the floor, get by slower defenders, and attack the rim. He was also more than capable of stepping out and knocking down threes. Unfortunately, none of these talents came to fruition in Dallas.
McRoberts spent most of his time with the Mavs rehabbing from several injuries, including a foot injury, that he sustained last season with Miami. He missed the first 37 games this season before eventually being cleared to return to game action. That action didn’t amount to much, however.
In two games, McRoberts logged a total of six minutes. The lack of playing time after a drawn out recovery process was a source of frustration at times. For these reasons, it is reasonable to assume that the Mavs parting ways with McRoberts is a mutual decision that benefits both parties.
“It’s a pretty amazing story,” head coach Rick Carlisle said of McRoberts’ recovery. “He came in coming off three fractured bones in his foot—in the same foot—and he’s walking out of here healthy, the healthiest he’s been in two years. So, that’s a big credit to him and the work that he’s put in and of course our training and medical staff.
“At this point, we’re kind of loaded up at the big position. These other guys are going to be playing. So, looking at another young player or perhaps a good waiver pick up opportunity makes sense for us as a franchise.”
It’s a shame that McRoberts wasn’t able to make an impact during his time with the Mavs. Now that he’s healthy, though, he may yet again find himself a useful contributor in the league. It just won’t be in Dallas.