Why The Mavs Should Court Ray Allen

We know what's left in the Mavs' cupboard of spendable assets: Primarily the $2.7-mil room-MLE. We know that they are considering a variety of names. And here's what I know: The name that should vault to the top of their flirtation list is 'Ray Allen.'

We're hearing that the Mavs like Mo Williams, and always have. We're aware that Turner, Crawford and Jameer are included in the in-house conversations.

We know that Mo might be able to get more dough than the Mavs can offer, that Carlisle and Larry Bird need to share some intel on what's wrong with Turner, that Dallas thinks Crawford is a knucklehead and that Jameer would create a crowd at point guard.

We also know that ESPN suggests there is a "mystery name'' here. ... another player they like more than Mo.

Who would that be? And who should it be?

I've tried to figure out who fits best in that room-MLE slot, and I finally came up with my player that a) might take that amount, and b) would work the best.

However, it's not a defensive specialist. Instead, it's the best shooter there is, to come in and fill up the basket. A full-sized SG who can get off his shot. Veteran, and a player who knows how to lead as needed.

Give me Ray Allen.

Yes, I know he's being courted by Cleveland and that LeBron and Ray are best friends. But the Cavs gave their MLE (and perhaps their designated shooter spot) to Mike Miller.

Yes, I also know that Allen has other suitors, including Miami, where last year he played 73 games in the regular season and all 20 postseason games, and he averaged 9.3 points per game on 41-percent shooting in the playoffs.

And yes, I know that he is turning 39 this weekend and is considering retirement.

"One thing is for certain, to [make a decision] on my terms is the most important thing," Allen said after the Finals. "Whether that is me retiring, staying here or going somewhere else, it will be on my terms. I've made it to this point, and I felt great that I have the choice to make it for myself."

The Mavs are staying very quiet when we ask about Allen; maybe that points to him being the "mystery'' guy, though I don't know that. Again, though, what I do know is that Dallas should offer Ray that room MLE, sell him on the idea that Cleveland by LeBron's own admission is going to take a couple years to develop into a power, and bring him aboard for a two-year deal.

You want a shooter? He'd be that guy ... and after 18 years of proven success, to me, that's no mystery.

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