Seth Curry and the Dallas Mavericks made the most of their new marriage. Now he enters a contract year where his future faces a fork in the road.
Last summer, the Sacramento Kings renounced their rights to Seth Curry allowing Curry to hit unrestricted free agency. A short time later, Curry signed a bargain deal with the Dallas Mavericks for two years, $6 million.
For Curry, it was a chance to prove his worth on his first multi-year contract. For Dallas, it was a low risk, high reward contract as they took the chance on the younger Curry brother.
Curry started the year coming off the bench in a limited role as Rick Carlisle tried to figure out how to use him. Everyone knew Seth could shoot the ball at a high clip, but his defense and playmaking was an underrated part of his game.
After injuries to some vets on the roster, Carlisle inserted Curry into the starting lineup and the rest is history.
Curry finished the season posting career averages in points, assists, rebounds and more.
Dallas missed the playoffs and Curry finished the season sidelined with a shoulder injury that made him miss the last seven games.
Now, Curry and Dallas are coming up on the proverbial fork in the road.
If you have ever been walking down a path in the woods and come upon a fork in the path, you have two choices for one decision. Do you take a left in the path or veer right?
For the Mavericks and Curry to veer left in the figurative fork in their relationship, it would mean Dallas views Curry as a foundational piece moving forward.
In this path, Dallas would feel strongly on the position of Curry moving forward. Whether he is their starting shooting guard alongside of a new point or they believe in him running the point, Dallas would have to be sold on his future position.
The biggest thing with this path would be the willingness to pay Curry a long-term deal worth roughly around $15-20 million a year. Not just willing, but confident that Curry would want to stay in Dallas long-term.
Curry is starting to enter into the prime of his career at the age of 26. If Dallas feels like last year was just the tip of the iceberg and he is a cornerstone piece moving forward, then they should take a hard left.
For the Mavericks and Curry to veer right at the fork in the road, it would mean Dallas isn’t sold on Curry being a foundational piece moving forward.
At the moment, Curry is on one of the better bargain deals in the league at around $3 million this coming season. If Curry builds upon his 2016-17 breakout season this coming year, then a hefty pay raise is on the horizon.
Curry will hit unrestricted free agency in the summer of 2018 where he will definitely have his suitors ready to pay up. If Brooklyn is out there throwing $19 million at Tyler Johnson, then Seth Curry will get a big offer from someone.
If Dallas isn’t comfortable about being that “someone” next summer, then veering right should be their choice.
Their belief in his future position could play into the decision also. If they think he is too small for a full-time shooting guard role or they don’t believe he can run the point, then it could cause them to veer right also.
A key factor in making that decision at the fork in the road is the timing of it all.
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At the moment, Curry is riding high at the moment after a career year and stock the highest it has ever been. Now he enters a contract year where his trade value will only go down every week that passes.
So for Dallas, the decision should be made fairly quick.
If left, then you go all in on Curry. You say all of the right things about his long-term role. You draft a player that can play alongside of him in the back court (if a guard). You make Curry an integral part of the offense and make it known you are ready to pay up for him next summer.
If right, then you entertain his value on draft night. His value is the highest it’s ever been at the moment and a team looking for outside shooting in the mid-late first round might be willing to give up their pick for him.
If Dallas stays in the middle, then they could very well finish the season and lose Curry for nothing next summer.
Either way, the fork is nearing quickly and Dallas needs to decide which direction they are going.