One of the Dallas Mavericks’ ultimate franchise mainstays appears to have committed to at least one more year with the club. As reported by ESPN’s Tim McMahon and other league insiders on Friday, Jose Juan Barea has come to terms with the Mavericks on a one-year, minimum deal that will pay him $2.6 million next season.
The 36-year-old is currently in his second stint in the Big D, having split multi-year runs with a three-year partnership with the Minnesota Timberwolves. Throughout his career, the Mayaguez, Puerto Rico native has been one of the league’s more energetic bench players, providing effort and effective playmaking in bursts.
As tracked by NBA Stats, Barea averaged nearly eight points and four assists in just 16 minutes per game during the 2019-20 campaign. He also connected on nearly 38 percent of his three-point shot attempts, one of the better marks of his 14-year career.
On-court production aside, though, the diminutive floor general’s best attribute may be the veteran presence and wealth of basketball knowledge he can provide to Dallas’ young stars, Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis. As relayed by ESPN’s Eric Gomez last December, Doncic identified Barea as a senior player who has helped him tremendously.
Meanwhile, Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle similarly noted Barea’s importance and said that he had earned the respect of the locker room as someone who went from being a fringe NBA player to a starter on the Mavs’ championship team nine years ago.
“J.J. is our last vestige [from 2011],” Carlisle said. “That’s very important [for Doncic]. In the locker room, our guys know that J.J. has that level of experience. They know that he was once a player who was undrafted and had to work his way into a situation where he could get playing time and eventually he became a starter on an NBA championship team, and that’s pretty phenomenal.”
Although Barea is seemingly intent on finishing his career in northeast Texas, he’ll likely have to fight for a roster spot in the coming weeks despite the fact that his new contract would be guaranteed. As noted by McMahon, the Mavs currently anticipate that they’ll have 16 players on guaranteed deals entering training camp. Not counting the club’s two two-way spots, that is one over the 15-man maximum established by the league.
In the event that he doesn’t make the team, it has been reported that he has coaching ambitions.
In September, The Inquisitr relayed that as many as three Spanish teams could be interested in acquiring his services for the 2020-21 campaign as well.