Monday Morning Mavs Donuts
Posted Jun 11, 2012

What The Odom Negotiations mean ... How the importance of the Haywood 'stretch provision' is being stretched ... Who Wants Free Passes To Studio Movie Grill? ... What more does LeBron need to do? Four more, that's what more ... Monday Morning Mavs Donuts

DONUT 1: What The Odom Negotiations mean ...

We've got the exclusive story on Dallas working with Odom to change his deadline here ... and let's now add a trio of simple "what's-it-mean?'' answers:

In general, a deadline change with Odom would be the hinge that does some big things all at once for the Dallas Mavericks ...

a) it allows the Mavs to make huge roster-shaping decisions after D-Will decides, rather than before

b) it turns Odom from a liability and a hassle into a MAJOR trade asset, and

c) it creates an opening to ADD to the current assets in free agency (operating over cap) rather than in essence SWAPPING one set of useful players for another set that is hopefully better (operating under cap).

In the total scheme of things, not having to do that under cap "start over" is a tremendous jump forward in the ability to quickly be elite again. And therefore, in that sense, it can be almost as important to Dallas' roster reload as any "big fish'' being chased.

DONUT 2: The Flame Fund ...

Friend of the Mavs and "Flamethrower'' Pat Reeves is battling cancer. Please consider a donation -- no matter how big or small -- to help her with her visits for treatment.


DONUT 3: The confusion over Haywood's "stretch provision'' ... Eddie Sefko breaks the story of Haywood’s contract including a “spread provision’’ that the Dallas Morning News says means “any team that waives Haywood can spread out the payments for the remainder of his contract until 2026 … That means the team that owns his rights and waives him would be responsible for no more than $2 million per year over the next 14 years. That clause in the deal is a huge incentive when it comes to including Haywood as a possible sweetener in trade talks … Other teams see that as a very appealing contract.’’

We’ve no doubt the contractual details are correct. (This sounds like a Mavs trick the front office probably does more frequently than most know.)

But we disagree with many of the suggested ramifications. Simply put (and meaning no disrespect to the principals): We don’t see the cap advantages or the trade advantages of this provision. We don’t see them at all.

So asked Mavs owner Mark Cuban if we are correct in believing that the "stretch'' is good for CASH relief but not CAP relief.

"You are correct,'' Cuban responded.

So we’re quite certain (and now confirmed by the guy who wrote the contract) that if waived, Haywood's payout would be stretched … but his cap hit would NOT change from how the deal was written.
Therefore, we don’t see why a team would trade for Haywood solely because he has this spread provision. In essence, that would be trading for the opportunity to throw a $27 million contract in the trash with no change on your cap or tax totals.

Trading for Haywood has value for some teams in some ways, and this provision adds one wrinkle to that: it's a sort of "insurance policy" on a franchise’s cash flow in the event he plays poorly enough that they wish to waive him. That will NOT impact their cap. But it will save a small-market or penny-pinching owner some cash on a yearly basis. That’s some “insurance’’ and that might have value to somebody.

This isn’t DUST and it isn’t LOAF; there’s no “instant vanishing’’ of cap impact, and maybe that’s where the report got its signals crossed. Because it’s not “vanishing,’’ it really doesn’t help getting a team to take on Haywood.

Also mentioned frequently is the notion that the Dallas Mavericks will amnesty Brendan Haywood so Dallas can get out from under the $9 million-a-year deal he is playing under. We continue to believe that amnesty is not the Mavs’ optimal move here – and that’s even more viable if management is successful in getting the Lamar Odom deadline changed. Keeping Haywood remains a possibility, as the Mavs wisely collect centers. Using him as a trade chip as part of the trade-matching for a player with a very big annual salary remains a possibility, too. But trading Haywood to a team so it can waive him and reap the cap-relief benefits?

That’s not the way a move with Brendan Haywood can work. That's what we say ... and that's what Cuban says.

DONUT 4: Besides, the problem with amnesty ...

We're not big supporters of the idea that teams are eager to exercise the amnesty provision "just because the rules say they can." Yes, in every NBA city there is some overpaid lug who some fans and media eagerly suggest should be amnesty candidates. But we say that in the end, there will be fewer guys amputated that way than you think.

The idea of throwing away a talented/useful player - while still paying him - just because he might be under-performing his contract usually doesn't make sense.

You don't get back a replacement for free. You don't necessarily get to re-spend the cap savings because so many teams operate over the cap. And in the case of Haywood (overpaid lug as you might think him to be) you make the team weaker with another hole to fill.

In what universe would the Mavs be eager to get rid of their best center?

We say the Mavs will try to upgrade from Haywood. But doing so via amnesty seems like no better than the third-best (that is, last-best) way to do it.

DONUT 5: The latest on Roy Hibbert ...

By now you are aware of's exclusive piece on Dallas' interest in Roy Hibbert. Indy coach Frank Vogel sounds aware, too, and he thinks them are fightin' words.
''I love our team so much, there's such a great positive chemistry and any time you see any of those guys, it just lights up,'' Vogel said. ''We're going to get every single one of them (free agents) back. The Pacers are going to shoot for the moon.''

Sounds like a $13.8-million-to-start plan to retain Hibbert. Now coach Vogel simply needs to get his owner to agree on that "moon'' thing.

DONUT 6: We're giving away FREE $50 giftcards to Studio Movie Grill TODAY! ...

Studio Movie Grill -- Eat, Drink, Movies! -- is teamming up with for some fun Mavs-lovin' project (and maybe even a charitable effort that is very close to all our hearts) and it starts like this:

Get on Twitter. Follow FishSports and follow Studio Movie Grill. And then tweet that you're following us. And voila, you might just win one of the three $50 giftcards we're giving away to Mavs fans!

Sign up on Twitter, retweet, and win ... We'll announce the three winners today in the noon hour on Twitter!

DONUT 7: Happy Father's Day, me! ...

For Father's Day, Marcia is taking me to New York. I've been a dozen times for Cowboys games, but never as a tourist, so it'll be a treat. She's got us lined up to do the grand touristy things and the only part that I haven't explained to her is why we're gonna have to veer over to Brooklyn to see if we can bump into a certain you-know-who has a rented pad over there ... temporarily, we hope.

DONUT 8: Centers in the draft ...

File this away, and we'll re-check in three weeks. But as of this weekend: We're told the Mavs are completely unsold on the idea that there is a true draft-elible center ready to step in and be a rotation player here.

DONUT 9: Another David Stern Grassy Knoll ...

You know, every year the NBA "gets caught'' prematurely printing t-shirts promoting an NBA Finals team before it gets to the NBA Finals. It now happens with such regularity, and causes such a profile-raising stir (and, we suppose, causes a rush to the NBA Store) that we're starting to wonder if they do it on purpose.

How do the photos "leak''? This league won't show us the lotto ping-pong balls but "accidentally'' shows us the controversial pre-printing of NBA Finals merchandise?


DONUT 10: LeBron in Game 7's ...

Going into Saturday's Miami-Boston ECF finale, LeBron James was averaging 36 points in Game 7's. No player in NBA history has a higher average than that.

And then he was terrific one more time, and Miami has a berth in a second consecutive NBA Finals. So is the jury in? And the pressure off?

He's done big things so many times, no doubt. Now he must do them four more times.

DONUT 11: Visitors from New Jersey ...
Here are the details on the Friday night backyard birthday party Mark Cuban threw for his wife … featuring Bon Jovi. And Delonte. And Carlisle. And yeah, Dirk came up the street to the mansion so he was there, too.

Bon Jovi is, of course, based in New Jersey. Maybe this was Mark Cuban practicing how to persuade somebody else to come from New Jersey to Dallas?!

DONUT 12: The Final Word ...

One more notable attendee at the Cuban Bon Jova Backyard Birthday Bash: Good to see you in town, Michael Finley!

Pop into The Mavs Store! The 'UBERMAN' shirts are cool!

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