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Why the Dallas Mavericks need to keep Theo Pinson in free agency

Dallas Mavericks, Theo Pinson
Dallas Mavericks, Theo Pinson / Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
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The Dallas Mavericks were 14-15 on December 20th and faced with the challenge of missing multiple players in the health and safety protocols when they signed Theo Pinson. They needed a wing, and Pinson had three years of NBA experience and was playing well in the G League. At the moment, it seemed like Pinson would fill a needed short-term role, but the 26-year-old made the most of his opportunity.

There was no massive statistical performance or incredible play that secure him a place on the roster for the remainder of the season. In fact, Pinson only played meaningful minutes in three contests where he averaged 8.3 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 1.3 steals in 21.8 minutes, but the 6’5 wing made an unquantifiable impact in the locker room that led head coach Jason Kidd to call Pinson the team’s MVP in February.

The Mavs signed him to a two-way contract in January, and he remained with the team throughout the postseason despite not being able to play. Pinson was the star of their bench mob that drew three fines throughout the postseason. He kept making an impact even when he did not play a second on the court.

Why the Dallas Mavericks need to keep Theo Pinson in free agency

Pinson is a free agent and is not eligible to sign another two-way contact because those deals are limited to players in their first four NBA seasons. The 6’5 wing will be starting his fifth next fall. The Mavs can offer him a $1.94 million qualifying offer to make him a restricted free agent. From there, the two sides must work out a deal that keeps Pinson in Dallas.

The team was so close this season that Jalen Brunson had every one of his teammates sign one of his jerseys on exit interview day, so he could remember this squad. The Mavericks made it to the Western Conference Finals because of their togetherness and will to play for each other. Theo Pinson played a key role in that. He cheered from the bench and picked up his teammates in the locker room. Pinson helped them win without playing a second on the court.

It is difficult to quantify that impact, but the Dallas Mavericks know they want to keep him on the roster next season. The organization will be happy to sign Theo Pinson to be their 15th man and the leader of their cheering section on the bench. The 26-year-old made a big enough impact in the locker room to earn an NBA contract. The Mavericks need him back, and Pinson found the long-term shot in the league he was searching for in Dallas.

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