DALLAS (105.3 THE FAN) – A few days ago, we asked Devin Harris about his off-season focal point. ‘Besides the contract?’ he responded, laughing. One of the Mavs’ focal points was sealing a deal with the veteran point guard, and while Devin kidded about money desires, he’s about to settle on a below-market price here.
The Dallas Mavericks are working on sealing a deal with Devin Harris, with the likelihood being that he gets the sort of deal (three years and $9 million) that was on the table for him in Dallas before the toe injury was revealed.
That is fair on many levels. Fate robbed Harris of that contract a year ago, causing him to sign a vet’s-minimum one-year contract. He has this offseason openly spoken about wanting that total $9-mil opportunity again. … and a source tells us that is indeed the range here.
It is also a relative bargain, given the recent contracts given to guards Shaun Livingston, Ben Gordon, Patty Mills, Avery Bradley, Jodie Meeks and Darren Collison.
*Will this agreement (due to be signed July 10) in any way clog Dallas’ pursuit of a big fish like LeBron James?
*Does this mean Dallas is still searching for moves at point guard, including a possible $4-mil salary-dump of Raymond Felton?
*Or, a budget signing of Dallas-based Mo Williams)?
*Are the Mavs better at the point overall if Devin starts in place of the departed Jose Calderon? Or is Harris to be the leader of a second wave off the bench?
(That last idea is optimal, because Devin’s chemistry extends beyond Dirk and to Wright and Carter, too. But the roster is in flux; it’s not guaranteed that Wright and Carter are on it. And Devin as a backup would mean somebody beating out Devin for the No. 1 spot. We’ll see about that.)
*Doesn’t this accentuate the Mavs’ need to acquire shooters? And not just a backup; a starting small forward who can shoot?
But regardless of all the questions, Harris does provided an important answer for the Mavs, who made him a priority of sorts with their 11:01 p.m. “Dinner With Devin” on the free-agency-window opening night. His chemistry with Dirk Nowitzki and others is key. He’s among the few Mavs with skills as a perimeter defender and a rim attacker. And he’s most definitely MFFL, as this deal is about to prove.
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