The Dallas Mavericks will sign veteran point guard J.J. Barea to a veteran minimum deal, per Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium.
The deal is expected to cost Dallas $2.5 million and won’t count against their current cap space, as they’ll wait to finalize the deal after they’ve gone over the salary cap.
Barea will be returning from a torn Achilles tendon suffered in January. And while the veteran has made noise about playing for his native Puerto Rico in the FIBA World Cup, he’s just 6 months removed from an injury that takes most players a full year or more to recover from.
It’s unclear at the moment what his specific timetable for return is and it may be that his role as a locker room presence is highly valued. Suffering this injury at age 35 few NBA guards have returned at all, let alone well, after suffering an Achilles tear, and those who have are among the all-time greats: Kobe Bryant, Clyde Drexler, and Chauncey Billups to name a few.
Prior to injury, Barea led one of the best bench units in the NBA while averaging 11 points and five and a half assists per game.