Mavs Change: Hunt In, Mathis, Najera Shuffled

The Mavs are trying to set the bar higher on the coaching staff. Now what's say they do the same thing in the 2015 NBA Draft? Hopefully, this isn't just all coincidence.

I am speaking for myself here and not Fish when I relay to you, and editorialize on, his notes (and Marc Stein's) on the as-it-happens staff movement. Stein says Nuggets interim coach Hunt is joining Rick Carlisle's Dallas Mavericks coaching staff. Fish says Dallas is trying to juggle the balls to retain Kaleb Caneles and Monte Mathis in whatever capacity and now confirms from Mavs sources that the goal is seeing Mathis moving to the Texas Legends with the incumbent D-League coach Eddie Najera moving to the Dallas scouting department. (UPDATE: Mathis is instead moving to Orlando to join Scott Stiles' staff.) Fish sees Kaleb as key to the Mavs making their LaMarcus Aldridge pitch.

And all of this is happening as Fish breaks the exclusive news of new strategies as it applies to the NBA Draft and free agency. Coincidence? I think not.

But now we need to ask the next level of questions .. a "why" about the past and a "what" about the direction for their thinking on the future.

But no Question No. 1: Why do the Mavs always opt for the undersized? Why get combo guards who are basically SGs that are too small to defend SGs? When are we going to start realizing that working at a size disadvantage is a handicap?

Golden State says its philosophy is to to prioritize wings who are tall and long, as they can clog up passing lanes and tend to make them better defenders. Find some who can shoot, and you have a two-way guy who creates havoc.

Why isn't Dallas doing the same? Why do the Mavs keep settling for munchkins?

I have to say that I keep hearing the refrain everywhere - "I don't care who they get, but I really hope they get full-sized players this time, they always get guys who are too small" - and that includes Coop and Fish many others in the know. And me, too. I've said it.

But put this another way - why don't the Mavs set the bar higher? Literally? Ager, Dojo, Roddy (combo SGs) and Larkin (tiny PG) all undersized, and all were busts. I think there's a connection. (Of course, maybe they all were bad players too, in which case their draft guru sucks.)

Target tall for the position. Long long arms. Some ability to shoot already. Aren't there players like that to pick from? And are they looking for such players? If not, why not?


We're seeing a staff change. Good. We're seeing a change in draft and free-agency strategy. Good.

Now can we "shoot higher" in one more area, please?

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