DONUT 1: 'GET YOUR ASS HOME' At Sunday's Exit Interviews, a variety of Dallas Mavericks were asked about their recruiting pitch for superstar point guard Deron Williams, a native of DFW and a free agent on July 1.
Dirk Nowitzki was complimentary -- "He’s a great dude and he’s from here, so I think it would be a great fit'' -- and mentioned Deron's love of the Texas Rangers. (Williams tweeted a photo of himself going to church on Sunday wearing his Josh Hamilton jersey.) Jason Kidd downplayed the "recruiting'' aspect of this but noted that he and Deron are scheduled to play golf soon.
But Shawn Marion was the most succinct.
“Get your ass home,'' said Trix, delivering his powerful message from behind yellow-framed glasses while wearing a matching yellow belt. "Home is where the heart is.”
DONUT 2: CASH FOR CARLISLE It's an odd policy but it's been an effective one for Mark Cuban: He doesn't renew the coach’s contract until it expires.
The policy is in place even for Rick Carlisle, who ‘led us to the Promised Land,’ as Dirk says, but who joins half the roster in contractual limbo.
"Rick's not going anywhere,’ swears GM Donnie Nelson, yesterday reiterating something he's told me half-a-dozen times this year since camp. But, if you are a serious Mavs fan and want to explore some of the myths, the questions, Dirk's thoughts and the dollars and sense of it all, take our free 7-day trial and check out our Premium study on the subject, which includes the fact that Carlisle's salary is presently less than that of three NBA coaches who just got fired.
DONUT 3: COACH JET Jason Terry didn't meet the media on Sunday. He opted instead to coaches his girls basketball team, and yes, I think there is symbolism and meaning there and I don't exactly endorse the symbolism or the meaning.
As I said when Kidd did the same a couple of years ago (begging off due to a "cold): There is a time to fume and there is a time to pout and there is a time to communicate to the Mavs shareholders (fans). Jet picked the wrong combination of times.
DONUT 4: BIG FUN WITH BIG WOOD
Want more DB.com video peeks inside the Mavs? We've got a vault full of them! Practice-court stuff, behind-the-scenes scenes, pregame work, one-on-one visits ... the works! Go Mavs and Go Premium and check 'em out!
Want another sample? Let's talk about African-American-colored Band-Aids with DeShawn!
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DONUT 5: I'M A BELIEVER? Mavs management obviously didn't believe a Tyson-with-Dallas club was going to go far this year (that believe in relation to the costs, the cap ramifications and future taxpayer penalties, that is.) Players disagree, as they should.
So Donnie says, "Tyson Chandler being on this team would not have guaranteed us a series win against the Oklahoma City Thunder. "All I'm saying is it's very, very difficult to repeat as a champion. Things are thick out West. And that guarantees nothing. It certainly helps you be a better basketball team, but again, it takes away from your flexibility this summer. ... We also would not have won that series had he been here.''
And Marion says, "Did he really say that?''
But here's where the pages are one, and it's the only place that matters now:
"Concerned? Yeah, we need to get better. That’s my only concern," Nowitzki says. "The Mavericks, usually we pride ourselves over the last decade not to play for the seventh seed or the eighth seed or just to make it into the playoffs. Our goal was always to be obviously one of the top four in the West, get home court and make a deep run. That was always our goal. It’s not just making it into the playoffs."
Donnie, you with us here?
"We don’t plan on putting out anything less than a championship caliber team,'' the GM says.
DONUT 6: DIRK'S STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS The "dumb jock'' schtick does not become Dirk. He is extremely involved with the work of Cuban and Donnie. Dirk knows EXACTLY what this club is attempting to do. Always has.
If some of us would quit yelling about Tyson and Deron, we'd hear it. He knows that cap space is about "the next two years,'' not just THIS SUMMER. He understands that there are no guarantees about this summer. He understands that if Deron Williams opts to not sign with Dallas when free agency opens, that the Mavs will shift to "Plan B, Plan C, Plan D ... or keeping our powder dry,'' as GM Donnie Nelson says.
"I don’t know what Mark and Donnie want to do or want to go after,'' Dirk says.
Yes he does. Taking this position separates Dirk from the suits, and maybe that's appropriate. But they are in this together. They always have been. And that's a good thing.
Read all about Dirk's State of the Mavs Address and watch our seven-minute Video Visit with him here.
DONUT 7: THE HENRYETTA HEN No, I do not have any idea why old pal Troy Aikman would sit courtside to root for the Mavs and react to their ouster by tweeting, "Go Thunder!''
He's went to high school in Oklahoma and then started at OU, of course. But before that, Troy grew up in Southern California and he ended up at UCLA before becoming a Cowboys legend. So ... who do you like better, Troy? Lakers or Clippers? Whichever one wins?
Aw, I'm kidding. Troy is a regional guy. What's good for Texlahoma is good for all of us, I guess.
DONUT 8: THANKS TO OUR SPONSORS
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DONUT 9: PGs AND X's-AND-O's Don't take this as an indictment of anybody on the roster (though it seems to be) and don't take this as an obvious desire for a Deron or a Dragic or a Nash (even though it seems to be that, too.) But I can promise you that in terms of X's-and-O's braintrust-level thinking, Dirk and Marion are among the Mavs leaders who believe this team is starving for a point guard who can create shots for himself in isolation and who can score off the pick-and-roll.
"Big fish,'' "medium fish,'' "guppie,'' at some point, as long as an acquisition can do those things, there can be offensive improvement.
DONUT 10: PURPLE PROSE What did DB.com's Michael Dugat do all night following the Game 4 loss?
It involved a peeing dog and a bottle of Scotch and a keyboard. Go get it.
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DONUT 12: THE FINAL WORD Stronger next year. Bleed blue.'' -- Dirk Nowitzki on Twitter.