The Dallas Mavericks released legend J.J. Barea during training camp. The veteran lost his backup point guard role to Jalen Brunson last season, but he still served as a team leader and extension of the coaching staff. The Mavs wanted to go younger and improve their defense this season. They had interest in Barea staying on as a coach, but the point guard wanted to continue playing.
He found a home with Estudiantes in Spain, which also allows him to represent his country in the FIBA AmeriCup qualifiers. Puerto Rico had two massive games this weekend in hopes of earning a berth in the tournament. They topped Mexico on Friday, despite a poor shooting night from Barea.
The veteran point guard had an impressive game to help Puerto Rico qualify on Saturday versus the Bahamas. Let us take a closer look.
Dallas Mavericks legend J.J. Barea drops 26 in win over Bahamas
Barea sank a deep buzzer-beating 3-pointer at the end of the first quarter.
He finished with 26 points, seven rebounds, eight assists, and one steal in 27 minutes of action on Saturday. Barea was nine of 17 from the field and six of seven on his free throws. The win earned Puerto Rico a spot in the AmeriCup and the Pan American Games.
The Mavericks legend still has it. He dropped 18 points in his last game for Estudiantes before the break as well. Barea is hoping for another opportunity in the NBA. He would love to catch on with a playoff team for the stretch run this season. Barea is a pick and roll master that can get buckets. It will be interesting to see if he gets the chance in 2021.
Fans should not rule out a reunion with the Dallas Mavericks at some point. They would love to have him back as a coach when J.J. Barea is ready to hang up the sneakers.