NBA / Jul 10, 2012 / 11:00 am

The Not-So Curious Case Of The Dallas Mavericks

Mark Cuban Swears On Live SportsCenter

The Dallas Mavericks have ripped apart their roster ever since winning the championship in 2011. Tyson Chandler, J.J. Barea, Jason Terry and Jason Kidd will all be gone by the start of this season, and Dirk will be left to wade in mediocrity by himself while Mark Cuban attempts to rebuild this franchise. Many are ripping the Mavs, and Cuban specifically, for dismantling a championship roster so quickly. But before we jump down Cuban’s throat, let’s think about this one: was it really a bad move?

Here’s what Jason Terry had to say about his decision to join the Celtics:

“‘Boston was the first to call me and Doc Rivers got on the phone and said, ‘We need you, you’re our No. 1 priority,’ he told RF Sports Report, which followed Terry and his daughter’s AAU basketball team at a recent tournament in Orlando, Fla. ‘Had I got that same phone call from Dallas, I’d still be a Dallas Maverick.

‘But I didn’t, so I’m on to bigger and better things and hopefully with that team, with the way they are structured right now we have another chance to win the championship.'”

We heard the same thing about Chandler. Cuban came to the table with half the money and years, so he bolted. And the T-Wolves came in over the top (4 years, $19 million) for Barea. So Cuban let them go, planned for the summer of 2012, and, unfortunately struck out. Let’s imagine, for a second, that Dallas keeps its roster together – now they’re competing with a stronger OKC team, a revitalized Spurs squad and a stronger Miami (remember, Miami had the first two games of the Finals all but locked up until, well, you know what happened). So instead of banking on another semi-miraculous run, he went for broke: Deron Williams. This, to me, is the subtle distinction between good and great GMs. Mark Cuban seeks championships, not championship contention. Really, it’s the difference between building a roster like the Indiana Pacers or the Miami Heat. Whether we like it or not, there are about to be three super teams (OKC, Miami, Brooklyn). And, really, the only way to compete with them, besides waiting around for multiple lottery picks and nailing every one of them (OKC), is to create your own dynastic duo/trio via trades or free agency.

That’s what Mark Cuban did. That’s what he failed at doing. But that’s not a reason to criticize.

What do you think of the of the way Mark Cuban has handled the Mavs recently?

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