Well, it looks like Sarge is staying in Big D after all. According to ESPN sources, The Dallas Mavericks have agreed to a one year minimum deal with Bernard “Sarge” James. The 29-year-old former military man was drafted by the Mavericks two years ago from Florida State, but he hasn’t had much playing time in each of his two seasons in Dallas.
In his two seasons, Bernard James has only averaged 2.1 points and 2.3 rebounds for Dallas. James has had a few decent games as a Maverick, most notably a performance against the New Orleans Hornets in the 2012-2013 season in which he recorded a career-high 7 blocks to help the Mavs win a tight game in the Big Easy. I think it’s also worth mentioning that Vince Carter had a sick game-winning three to win that game after a nice comeback by Dallas.
While Bernard James has had some games in which he helped the Mavericks to victory, his biggest game during his first two seasons in the league actually came in the D-League for the Texas Legends. Sarge was sent to the Legends for one game in which he absolutely dominated the Los Angeles D-Fenders and showcased his hustle and athleticism with 38 points, 18 rebounds, and 4 blocks while shooting 90% from the field. Not surprisingly, the Mavericks called James back immediately after that performance.
Bernard James is now the fourth center on the Mavericks roster, with Greg Smith, Brandan Wright, and the newly acquired Tyson Chandler. James’ contract is also fully guaranteed, putting the Mavs at 15 fully guaranteed contracts, the limit for NBA teams. However, the Mavs have also given two partially guaranteed contracts to forwards Ivan Johnson and Eric Griffin, both of whom played well for the Mavs Summer League team this summer.
I predict a similar role for Bernard James this year as a very limited player that will likely get playing time only in time of an injury, especially since the Mavs brought back Tyson. However, I do see Sarge playing more games in the D-League this season to work on his game.Unfortunately, James’ future in the NBA doesn’t look too great, but I’m glad he’ll be wearing a Mavs jersey for at least one more season, even if he rides the bench all year. One thing’s for sure though: Bernard James will always give his all when he plays, and that can definitely land you a spot in this league.