With training camp starting in less than three weeks, the Dallas Mavericks have 20 players under contract for next year, but only 15 of them can make the final roster.
The Mavericks noticeably handed out partial guaranteed contracts like candy this offseason hoping to strike gold with some lesser known players. Along with the partial guarantees, the Mavericks also have portion of their roster made up of veterans on expiring deals. Thus creating some competition for who makes the final roster.
With so many questions around the makeup of the roster, I have broken down the training camp roster into the following three sections.
Literally no debate with these guys. They will be on the roster and will be responsible for most of the success for the team this year.
Nov 11, 2014; Dallas, TX, USA; Dallas Mavericks forward Chandler Parsons (25) dribbles during the game against the Sacramento Kings at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
Dirk Nowitzki– Does he have a statue yet?
Chandler Parsons– Prone for a breakout year and arguably the new face of the Mavs.
Wesley Matthews– Our highest paid player and huge key for the Mavs success this year.
Deron Williams– Starting point guard, cheap contract, contract year…a lot of motivation.
J.J. Barea– Probably the most questioned contract the Mavs handed out. He is locked in.
Devin Harris– Still a couple of years left on the fan-favorite’s contract.
Justin Anderson– Mavs first round draft pick that we all have high hopes for.
Zaza Pachulia– Came over in trade from Bucks and could be the starting center.
*I am sure some of you will think that a couple of more names will be automatics for the roster, but this is who I am going with for this post. Zaza is the only name on this list that isn’t on a long-term deal or not a face of the franchise, but I don’t think the Mavericks would trade for someone who won’t make the roster.
Filling out the Mavericks roster, we see a group of veterans on short-term deals that could make more of an impact than people think.
Raymond Felton– The Mavs love him for his professionalism and he’s in the last year of his deal.
Charlie Villanueva– Signed to a one year contract this past offseason. Provides plenty of shots off the bench.
Jeremy Evans– In a forgotten offseason signing, he was signed to a 2-year deal. Can he find the rotation?
Jan 27, 2015; Dallas, TX, USA; Dallas Mavericks forward Dwight Powell (8) looks to passes the ball during the game against the Memphis Grizzlies at the American Airlines Center. The Grizzlies defeated the Mavericks 109-90. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
JaVale McGee– A popular choice to win the starting center job. On a very friendly contract.
Sam Dalembert– Sammy was brought back on a one year deal and could provide solid minutes at center.
John Jenkins– A young intriguing guard who can shoot the ball. Signed to a multi-year deal in the offseason.
Dwight Powell– Last year of rookie deal. Nice summer league and some people hold him to high regards.
*With only 15 people making the roster and 12 of them dressing on a nightly basis, we could find all of this group making the final roster. Jenkins and Evans are both signed to contracts for 2 or more years. McGee has a team option for the second year. The others have expiring contracts after the year.
The Partial Guarantees
This offseason the Mavericks raised some eyebrows by handing out partial guaranteed contracts to five different players that each hold a unique background.
Jarrid Famous– Big man from USF who could provide some rebounding help.
Maurice NDour– Forward from Senegal who had a great summer league for the Knicks.
Brandon Ashley– Forward out of Arizona who could give the Mavs some needed length.
Jamil Wilson– A former D-League standout who can hit the three.
Salah Mejri– Athletic big man from Tunisia who is 29 years old.
*The chances of one of these players making the final roster is slim but I don’t think it is impossible. Going by roster need, Wilson could have the best chance with the need for wing help. Based off talent and team fit, I believe Mejri would make a great fit. His athleticism and defense could provide some good bench minutes.
With the Mavericks having a training camp roster full of players with at least partial guaranteed contracts, the battle for roster spots should be intriguing to watch as training camp comes.
Stay tuned as we break down training camp battles and The Smoking Cuban staff makes their predictions on who makes the final roster.
Next: Top 10 Shooting Guards of the West Heading into 2015-16
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