Mavs Draft-Night Plans In Donuts

As Mark Cuban himself says, 'There are a thousand different ways' for the Mavs to go about creating cap room for free agency. But what you are about to read is the best way to mesh Mavs free agency with the Mavs' draft. It's using No. 13 as an 'asset' rather than seeing it as a 'hindrance.' And it's about to be among the optimal plans inside Mavs HQ:

DONUT 1: A Draft-Night Mavs Trade ...

On May 7 here on, our David Lord was first to detail the possibility of the Dallas Mavericks dumping the 13th overall pick in order to gain $1,655,300 of cap room that could be used to fit a free-agent acquisition.

This week, our friend Chad Ford of ESPN called it "likely'' that Dallas would dump the pick.

On Wednesday, in rather excruciating detail, I outlined "10 Issues Regarding What To Do At 13.'' The short version: Trading away 13 for nothing is among the many options at Dallas' disposal, and it's too early for any of us -- and too early for the Mavs -- to lock into a singular path. (The long version, I humbly submit, is worth your time.)
Today, I believe I have pinpointed Dallas' optimal path ... and even what could eventually be Dallas' planned path.

DONUT 2: Dallas' Draft-Night Plan ...

There are a number of reasons we've assigned Croatian point forward Dario Saric to the Mavs at the 13th pick. A foursome of Mavs execs recently went to Croatia to eyeball him. He fits the Dallas profile in a number of ways. Oh, and I have personal knowledge of where Saric ranks on Dallas' big board. ( That exclusive can be found here.)

But as a Euro, Saric fits in one very critical way.

DONUT 3: The Euro Cap Stash ...

It is common practice to draft a young European player and then leave him overseas to develop. (Or in the case of a few Mavs prospects, to never quite develop). The selection of Saric would represent a branch of that same tree ... but for a vastly different reason:

Dallas wouldn't draft Dario Saric and stash him because he's unready; Dallas would draft Dario Saric and stash him because CBA rules mean that $1.6 million cap hold could be made to disappear.

In other words, there is a way for Dallas to USE the pick (instead of trading it) ... AND to keep the player (instead of dumping him as a non-asset) ... AND to create the $1,655,300 of cap room that would help facilitate the acquisition of Paul or Dwight or whomever.

The way the CBA treats an overseas player also provides a possible way for the Mavs to retain their pick without having to worry about an impact on their cap.

A first-round draft pick who is playing overseas can be selected and NOT count against The Mavs' cap as long as he has a contract to play elsewhere. In addition, even without a contract he can he removed from the Mavs' cap if he and the team agree that he won't be signed by the Mavs this season.
That No. 13 player could be any of a handful of foreign guys, but for the sake of the example, let's stick with Saric (especially because of the Mavs' keen interest in him): Dallas could draft Saric -- heck, the Mavs could move up to ensure their selection of him OR move down before picking him as a way of gaining another future pick -- and then leave the 19-year-old in Europe.

He would be Dallas property. Nothing would be sacrificed. The Mavs would have gained $1,655,300 of room simply by stashing a kid who might not be ready to contribute at this level quite yet anyway.

THAT is "Asset Management.''

THAT is infinitely smarter than considering the No. 13 pick to be a piece of garbage that is blocking the team's path to free-agent shopping.

That outline right there is the Mavs' optimal path. And I now know that they are well aware of it.

Remember, as Mark Cuban himself says, "there are a thousand different ways'' for the Mavs to go about creating cap room. I have some concerns, frankly, that Dallas is truly considering a more "conventional'' path: The negotiation of a deal for 13 before the Draft, and then the rights traded as soon as the pick is made. (That fits Chad Ford's info as well.)

But "conventional'' isn't always "best.'' I know that the "Euro Cap Stash'' is the best one in my eyes ... and infinitely more important than that, that it's a possibility that is opening the eyes at folks at Mavs HQ, too.

DONUT 4: Follow the Mavs on Twitter ...

Follow the Mavs on Twitter: Mike Fisher, David Lord and Michael Dugat keep you up-to-the-minute informed on all things Mavs!

DONUT 5: NBA Scouting Combine measurements ...

From height-to-hand width, thanks to Wordsmith on Boards for assembling the NBA Draft Combine measurements ... a complete and rather exhaustive list.

DONUT 6: Graduation time! ...

A tip of the cap of appreciation to Frisco Party Station, your neighborhood headquarters for all your graduation party needs! All the neighborhood schools represented -- college and even high school! -- and the party is on!
DONUT 7: Back to the Hornets? ...

I'll admit it: They are both from the South. They both have funky colors. They both are largely insignificant.

So I've continued to spend the last few years mixing up the Charlotte Bobcats with the New Orleans Hornets.

Part of my mental mixup, of course, is due to the fact that New Orleans used to be the Hornets. And now that New Orleans is the Pelicans, Charlotte is reportedly trying to change the franchise's name back to the Hornets.

This is the right thing, I suppose. But the wheels of justice turn slowly in the NBA. It'll take at least 18 months to make the name change.

And, unfortunately for the whole lot of the Bobcats, Hornets and Pelicans, maybe much longer for them to change their way to being significant on the court.

DONUT 8: Here come the visits ...

The Mavs are starting to schedule draftee workouts/visits to DFW. One compelling name to expect here around June 3: 6-5 shooting guard Jamaal Franklin of San Diego State.

DONUT 9: NBA Concussion Policy ...

Too often it seems some of the rulings that come down from on high in Chancellor Stern's office are ... "subjective.'' "Arbitrary.'' "Loosey-goosey.''

But here's one that is (finally) locked in: The NBA Concussion Policy.

Why has this never been made public before? Remember Chris Kaman's issues from last season and how he return seemed to be shrouded in mystery -- even in the sense that it seems to be a mystery to Chris?

Now we've got answers. In writing. We may never see Stern's lotto balls and may never know why flannel is dress-code offensive to him or why he was so fond of a plastic ball ... but we've got this one in writing.

DONUT 10: Thanks to Red Rock! ...
Our North Dallas hangout for sports and live music? It's Red Rock Bar & Grill! They help make what it is ... thanks, guys!

DONUT 11: Thinking Fans ...

Need to catch up on some of the basics of the Mavs' FA pursuits? The education can begin here, with Our "Thinking Man's Guide To The Double-Pipedream.''

And then, when you are ready to earn your Mavs Masters Degree, dig into David Lord's brilliant exploration of the Mavs' options when it comes to pursuing Paul AND Dwight.

This is the Premium goods. Well worth your free seven-day trial, well worth your dime-a-day. And it's just the beginning ...

DONUT 12: The Final Word ...

Dirk Forever.

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