Per Shams Charania of The Athletic, the Mavs are signing forward Maxi Kleber to a 3-year, $33 million contract extension, securing him through the 2025-26 season.
This is a semi-interesting decision for the Mavericks. Kleber is already 30 years old, so in the final year of his new contract, he’ll be 34. He’s a guy that relies on two things to keep him relevant in the NBA: shooting and defense. Will the defense fall off a cliff as his legs get more mileage underneath them?
Hopefully Maxi can stay athletically nimble enough to remain a solid defender through the duration of his contract, but let’s be honest, all that really matters here is his shooting. If Maxi can shoot the ball consistently from deep, he’ll always have a pathway to playing time.
Last season was a brutal one for Maxi. He put up abysmal .398/.325/.708 shooting splits. March and April were particularly unkind to Kleber, in fact he hit just 9 threes the entire month. He picked it up in the playoffs and caught fire at times, but the 2021-22 season still left a bad taste in my mouth in regard to Maxi Kleber.
Do I love the idea of Maxi on the Mavs through 2026? No. But the good news about his contract is that it will be extremely tradeable. The $11 million annual average will be chump change in a couple of years. If his production continues to fall off a cliff, they can just include him as salary filler in a trade.