Everyone is talking about the NBA draft right now, and rightly so. Portland improved tremendously picking up Greg Oden via the draft and then netting center Channing Frye and guard Steve Francis from New York.
Seattle picked up Kevin Durant, the best player in the draft as far as I can see.
But, Dallas with its 67 win regular season was unable to draft one of the marquee names with its picks of 34, 50 and etc. The Mavs did land Nick Fazekas from Nevada. He is an interesting project in that he is big, 6-11 and 235) and a lot of folks compare him to Dirk. They also picked up 6-5 guard Renaldas Seibutis from Lithuania and Reyshawn Terry from N. Caro.
As stated the draft is over. Now is the time to consider the 2007 list of free agents. There are three types of free agents - unrestricted , restricted and those with limited salary protection. Right now I am zeroed in on the unrestricted free agent list (UFA).
Dallas has four players on the unrestricted free agent list this season: Austin Croshere, Devean George, Kevin Willis and Jerry Stackhouse.
Until this season I was not a big fan of "Stack". But, he has made a believer out of me. He was a big reason the Mavs enjoyed the success they had this year and it is mandatory that the Mavs resign him as soon as possible.
I know, last year after the Miami fiasco, I was saying get rid of Stack and get anything in return. Shows what I know and hey get your own pipedream this one is mine.
There are some big names out there on the UFA this year like Chauncey Billips, Chris Webber, Keith McLeod, Luke Walton, Gary Payton, James Posey, Vince Carter, Grant Hill, Jalen Rose, Mike Bibby and Rashard Lewis to name a few.
However, the one free agent that intrigues me as a fit for the Mavs is Desmond Mason of New Orleans/OKC.
Since Desmond played ball at Waxahachie High School and showed such promise, I have dreamed of him slam dunking the ball in a Mavs uniform. He had a stellar collegiate career at Oklahoma State and then moved on to the Seattle SuperSoncis, where he was a first round pick. From there he was traded to Milwaukee and then moved on to the Hornets.
"DeeTee" averaged 34.3 minutes for the Hornets this season and is coming off surgery in April to repair a deviated septum from a broken nose in a game at the end of the season. Mason averaged 13.7 points and 4.6 rebounds per game this year. Those numbers are very near his NBA career average of 12.8 points and 4.5 boards per game.
Head coach Avery Johnson has built his team on defense. But, defense let them down in the playoffs this year and the team needs to return to defense as it maintains its scoring prowess.
So, resign Stack and add DeeTee. Mason can score and is one of the best defenders in the NBA. He is not a trouble maker and would fit in on and off the court for the Mavs.
Are you listening Mr. Cuban?
If you donít believe me grab Coach Johnson and newly acquired assistant coach Paul Westphal, they will tell you all about the best basketball player ever to wear a Waxahachie uniform.
Jim Perry is the assistant sports editor at the Waxahahcie Daily Light. You may reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org