The Dallas Mavericks are rumored to be in the thick of the running for free agent DeAndre Jordan, but the team is quickly working on backup plans that may include Indiana Pacers big man Roy Hibbert.
The Mavericks are one of a handful of teams in the running for Jordan, but they aren’t putting all their eggs in his basket. NBA sources claim the team is also setting the groundwork for a sign-and-trade deal for Hibbert, who just exercised his $15.6 million player option for the upcoming season.
As the Indianapolis Star noted, Hibbert could be in need of a change of scenery, especially after the Pacers drafted big Texas freshman Myles Turner in June’s NBA Draft.
The report noted, “Hibbert, a two-time All-Star, struggled mightily in 2014-15, averaging his fewest points per game (10.6) since his rookie season (7.1). Larry Bird and Frank Vogel have stated time and time again the team’s desire to play a more up-tempo style — one that doesn’t fit Hibbert’s game.”
The move could also bolster the Mavericks without tying them to a long-term deal, ESPN’s Tim McMahon reported.
“But trading for Hibbert, whose $15.5 million salary the Indiana Pacers would like to shed, would allow the Mavs to fill their vacancy at center without making a long-term financial commitment,” he wrote. “The 7-foot-2 Hibbert is in the final season of his contract.”
The Dallas Mavericks are rumored to be looking into some other big additions to the team. McMahon reported that Dallas is very interested in point guard Jeremy Lin and could be waiting for some other signings to take place before making their move.
Mavs have touched base with a bunch of point guards. My educated guess is they end up signing Jeremy Lin.
— Tim MacMahon (@espn_macmahon) July 2, 2015
Plan was always to wait until after bigger dominoes fall. Hope to sign a Jeremy Lin/Mo Williams for $2.8M exception. https://t.co/e21ffKw1br
— Tim MacMahon (@espn_macmahon) July 3, 2015
Dallas has already made one of the biggest signings of the early free agency period. On Thursday, they announced a four-year deal for swingman Wes Matthews, who actually turned down an offer from the Sacramento Kings for about $12 million more. Sources say Matthews was uneasy about tension within the Kings, especially between DeMarcus Cousins and coach George Karl.
The Dallas Mavericks may have to wait a bit longer before any of the rumors can come to fruition. DeAndre Jordan has yet to announce a decision, and Jeremy Lin is reportedly getting interest from the New York Knicks and Chicago Bulls as well.
[Image via Getty Images/Andy Lyons]