Mavs Question: Just Do DeAndre + Wes Now?!
It seems so simple, assuming both DeAndre Jordan and Wes Matthews give the Mavs a "yes'' answer:
If they give you what you want (the "yes''), you give them what they want -- the $19 mil and the $15 mil respectively.
Ah, if it were only that easy. Then Matthews would likely be sealed up by the Mavs yesterday and, assuming Jordan's 5 p.m. (LA time) meeting with the Clippers goes poorly, DeAndre would be all sealed up, too.
But wait. 19 + 15 = 34.
The Mavs don't have $34 million in cap room. They have $32 million in cap room.
So, what's the problem? What about using all those fancy trades DB.com is always blabbering on about? Let's first know that Dallas officials as of noon today harbor some confidence about a Plan A of Jordan/Matthews (though when have Dallas officials ever lacked confidence in this area?) Now let's walk through that "fanciness,'' which becomes not just a matter of desire but also a matter of timing and asset allocation and extreme cooperation.
Can Dallas manufacture a DeAndre S&T? In theory, perhaps. But what is there motivation if they are losing Jordan (and not getting Chandler back, as both teams once considered before Tyson went to Phoenix)?
And if they did, would they want Rondo? Or Monta? Not really.
Could you somehow orchestrate a multiple S&T that involves you being an over-the-cap team, using both Ellis and Rondo, one to get DeAndre first and the other to get Wes? Again, in theory you can. But ...
Our original premise on the Double Pipedream (two big fish, such as DeAndre and LaMarcus Aldridge) was largely predicated on one of them signing outright (Aldridge) and the other coming in an over-the-cap S&T sending TY to the Clippers. What Dallas is left with now is less available assets and delicate timing.
Why should Matthews wait on Dallas' "promise-to-try'' on an S&T to give him $15 mil if other teams are willing to give it to him, no muss, no fuss? It's possible, as he might have a lovely relationship with Chandler Parsons and his Mavs dining partners. But doesn't TY's departure teach us all (again) that players don't wait for tomorrow's "maybe'' when they can get today's paycheck? Oh, and when you think about this obstacle, it's obvious: How can you Sign-and-Trade away players who haven't signed elsewhere yet? As of noon, that was an issue for Rondo and Monta, alleviated a bit now with the Stein report that Monta is going Indiana to for four years and $44 mil.
(Wanna S&T Monta there for someone like Roy Hibbert? Maybe. But only if you fail on bigger fish ... and you can't give up on that yet, of course. So ... "available assets and delicate timing.''
Here's the simplest approach, and one we believe Mark Cuban is pushing for: The Mavs are telling Matthews, "We have this much cap room. You get every bit of it -- $12 mil -- that DeAndre doesn't get. Please sign here, let's all go to Bootsy Bellows as we anticipate DeAndre's thumbs-up decision, in the morning go meet with trainer Casey Smith on that Achilles rehab and let's go to work.''
By the way, regarding sign-and-trades in which the other team has you over the barrel instead of vice-versa (as would've been the case with a Tyson-to-LAC swap): That other team might just need more than a Felton throw-away. They might want your pick. Your players. Your assets. Your overpay in another way.
So, the Mavs can't promise $15 million to Matthews AND promise $19 million to Jordan. They can't because they don't have sign-and-trade arrangements in hand ... which they can't have because all the possible haven't agreed to deals elsewhere yet.
Amid all the available cleverness and all the mind-numbing cleverness, the best option for Dallas is the simplest: Win DeAndre Jordan and Wes Matthews with the money they have, not with the money they might have. Or might never have.
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