At today’s open practice for the Dallas Mavericks, one question that really stuck out in my mind is what is Salah Mejri’s future with the team? The addition of Jeff Withey and Dirk starting at center bring some major questions.
Salah Mejri is an interesting player with an even more interesting playing style and most people either love him or they hate him. His confidence is unwavering as he stands up to the LeBron’s and Russell Westbrook’s of the game without even missing a beat, but his talent level definitely leaves something to be desired.
As I sat and watched the Mavericks open practice this afternoon, the realization that Jeff Withey is an NBA level center really set in for me personally. Withey may not be a game changer by any means but the Mavs went out to get him for a reason. Withey will have playing time this season almost assuredly and, unfortunately, that playing time will come as the third stringer.
With Dirk now penciled in as the starting center, the Mavericks are going to transition Nerlens Noel into a sixth man role for the team. Between Dirk and Noel, most of the center minutes will be taken every game. Then, knowing that a good defensive center like Jeff Withey is on the bench, the Mavs undoubtedly have him as the third center right now.
The problem is, there is no reason for the Mavericks to have 4 centers on the team with the NBA in its current state. That leaves Salah Mejri as the odd man out once again. Is there really any feasible reason the Mavs should keep Mejri on the roster other than the fact that he has already been with the team?
It would be sad if the Mavs do end up cutting Salah. Even though he may not be quite to the level of the other centers on the roster, he is still an entertaining player for the Mavericks and has poured a lot of blood and sweat into the team during his years with the squad.
Hopefully the Mavericks will be able to keep Mejri around at least with the D-League team, but it just doesn’t seem like a good fit for now. I hope that I am wrong in some ways but, if Mejri is cut, we wish him the best in his future basketball career.