Dallas Mavericks: Al-Farouq Aminu should be a potential free agent target

Dallas Mavericks Al-Farouq Aminu (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Dallas Mavericks Al-Farouq Aminu (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /

The Dallas Mavericks will be searching for a few new players to round out the team this summer. Although the big names will dominate the headlines and will be the main targets, some smaller names should be in the running, too.

This offseason is going to be a good one for the Dallas Mavericks, I can already feel it. With the Mavs going into the summer with a solid cap situation, a solid roster situation and a consistent coaching and front office situation, there are good things happening in Dallas that players around the league are likely noticing as well.

The names that we will continue to hear until the free agency period begins are those of Kemba Walker, Nikola Vucevic, Malcolm Brogdon and the less likely targets like Klay Thompson, Khris Middleton and Kawhi Leonard. Those guys would all be very interesting and solid targets for Dallas, but the likelihood of seeing them in Mavs uniforms is very, very slim.

The NBA will have a lot of smaller name guys available as free agents this summer as well, though. Some names that people are already talking about include Ed Davis, Patrick Beverley, Danny Green and Robin Lopez. One guy that I have not seen mentioned, however, is Al-Farouq Aminu.

Most of you remember that Aminu played for the Mavs from 2014-15, in between his time with the Hornets/Pelicans and his time now with the Blazers. Despite the fact that Aminu’s numbers while in Dallas are less than stellar, most who remember him have a fond memory of his play in that time.

Aminu averaged 5.6 points, 4.6 rebounds, 0.8 assists, 0.9 steals and 0.8 blocks per game in a very limited 18.5 minutes per game. Those numbers are pretty subpar until you look at the per 36 stats and see that it is about what he has been averaging with the Blazers who utilize him significantly more than the Mavericks ever did.

Aminu has become a reliable three-point shooter and an excellent defender over his NBA career and his athleticism and fluidity make him a great support player for a solid team. If the Mavs were able to get him from Portland this summer, he would step into the starting SF slot for Dallas seamlessly and immediately become the best defensive player in the first unit.

Aminu’s price tag should be semi-reasonable as well. The Blazers are in a bit of a bind with their salary situation next year as they reportedly have $126 million on the books. If the Mavs offered a deal similar to the one he has been on at about $7 million a year, the Blazers would have a tough time matching that. If we even went up to $9 a year, the chance of getting him would be fairly high, in my opinion.

Signing Aminu would cut into the Mavs cap which is something they don’t really want to do unless the tier A and B options are exhausted. If the top tier guys are gone, however, and the Mavs can get Aminu for say $8 million a year, that still saves roughly $22 million for another guy. And, if the team was able to move Courtney Lee‘s contract, you’re back up over $30 mil.

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The fit with Aminu and the Mavs is a good one. He is a hard-nosed player that gets his job done, the kind of guy that Carlisle really likes on his team. His contract would be reasonable and his play style would fit great with the young players the Mavs currently have. Sounds like a win in my book.