How can Mavericks improve roster without cap space? 5. Bird Rights
Bird Rights allow teams over the cap to re-sign their own free agents. It is also known as the Larry Bird exception and dates back to the Celtics’ legend’s free agency in 1983.
Mavericks fans know that Jalen Brunson and Dorian Finney-Smith will be unrestricted free agents in the summer of 2022, and without Bird Rights, Dallas would not have space to re-sign either player. Both can still agree to an extension during the regular season, and the Mavs have the inside track on retaining both when they hit free agency this summer. The front office may want to wait to sign them because it gives them more flexibility to add a piece this summer, more on this to come.
The Mavs have full Bird Rights on Brunson and Finney-Smith. Willie Cauley-Stein also hits unrestricted free agency in 2022, but Dallas only has early Bird Rights on him. They can give any deal to JB and Doe-Doe, but the organization is limited to offering Trill 104.5 percent of the NBA’s average salary.
The Dallas Mavericks cannot be satisfied with just retaining their current players. They need to make upgrades in the offseason, and here are four ways to do just that.