Note: This post originally appeared on MavsFanatic.com
Could recently bought out free agent center JaVale McGee be a fit in Dallas? Mavs would be ‘Shaqtin’ A Fool’ by not exploring him as a potential option. Mavs Fanatic staffer Michael Lark explains.
According to Sam Amick of USA Today, the Phildadelphia 76ers have waived center JaVale McGee, just hours before the March 1 playoff eligibility wavier deadline. McGee was acquired in a deadline deal by the Sixers last month from the Denver Nuggets in exchange for Chukwudiebere Maduabum and a 2015 first-round pick.
“I don’t want to get bought out,” McGee told reporters immediately following his trade to the Sixers, citing a desire to keep the remaining portion of the $11.25 million (Hoops Hype) that was owed to him this season.
However, after gauging the interest of several playoff teams looking to add his services, McGee and the Sixers ultimately decided on a buyout. McGee has averaged 4.6 points, 2.7 rebounds and 0.9 blocks in just 23 games this season due to a leg injury.
So, the obvious question is, should the Mavs explore JaVale McGee as an option?
Let’s put it like this, “15 minutes could save you 15% or more on your car insurance.” Ok, so it’s obvious at this point that Mavs GM Donnie Nelson will, at the very least, make an exploratory call to McGee’s agent BJ Armstrong to gauge his client’s interest in joining the Mavs gold and white; or blue and black, depending on your level of color blindness. Mavs insider Mike Fisher of DallasBaskeball.com has already reported the Mavs will re-evaluate their interest level in McGee and this buyout almost assures it.
“Whether it’s a new job with one of the Texas teams (San Antonio Spurs, Dallas Mavericks, Houston Rockets), the Miami Heat or another contender, McGee has every reason to be enthused about what lies ahead — especially considering he didn’t give any money back.” – Sam Amick, USA Today Sports
While the Mavs had their sight’s initially set on adding a Jermaine O’Neal-Amar’e Stoudemire combo, a Stoudemire-McGee combo wouldn’t be such a bad consolation. When motivated, McGee possesses the elite athleticism and size at 7-feet, 270 pounds to be quality rebounder. As a team, it’s not like the Mavs rebounding could get much worse at 42.4 (20th) per game, especially with Tyson Chandler out.
Following the repair of a stress fracture in his left tibia that limited him to five games during the 2013-14, McGee has struggled to regain his form as an elite shot blocker. It’s unknown where he stands health-wise at this point, but I think we’ve all become more than aware of the Mr. Miyagi-like healing power of Mavs Head Athletic Trainer Casey Smith.
As the Mavs continue to wrestle their way up the standings in a loaded Western Conference, signing McGee to prevent conference’s rivals from further boasting their front courts wouldn’t be such a bad strategy in itself. And, at the very least the Mavs will be “stuck” with a 27-year-old minimum salary, 7-foot, 270 pound third-string center who will ride the pine as the Mavs last man and give them an equivalent-level of production to that of Greg Smith with significantly more upside.
As an added bonus, he has the potential to end up on Shaqtin A Fool on a weekly-basis and who doesn’t love Shaqtin A Fool? So why not? Let’s get JaVale McGee to the Mavs and see what he has.
Shaqtin’ A Fool – The Best of the Worst of JaVale McGee
Cover Photo Credit: Glenn James/NBAE via Getty Images