Mavericks sign Gooden to a one-year contract
After the Magic matched the Mavs’ qualifying offer for restricted free agent Marcin Gortat the franchise was facing a serious problem. On one hand, the need for a new starting center to replace the aging Erick Dampier was omnipresent. On the other hand, the free agent market featured very few promising players to fulfill this role. Likewise, trading Dampier is not a recommendable move since his unusual contract will be a more valuable asset next summer.
However, the Mavericks were able to address the issue to some extent as Dallas’ front office announced today that Drew Gooden and the Mavs were able to agree on a year deal worth approximately $5 million. In his eight years in the NBA, Gooden has played for seven different teams with the San Antonio Spurs being his last stop. Unlike many players who have been traded multiple times, Gooden has proven to be a reliable addition for any team throughout his career. Last year, he averaged 9.8 points and 4.4 rebounds in just 16.8 minutes per game. Although these numbers are not amazing one has to consider that he could very well be a double-double contender if he gets to play starters minutes in Dallas. Moreover, his above average defense is a key aspect for the Mavericks who experienced serious problems on the defensive end of the floor in 2008-09. Since being drafted by the Memphis Grizzlies in 2002, Drew Gooden averaged 12.0 points and 7.9 rebounds in 28.1 minutes per contest.
Even though Marcin Gortat might have been the better option for the Mavs, Gooden can be expected to give them roughly the same production and defensive intensity. Furthermore, he has shown what he is capable of night in and night out and will not be a wildcard going into the regular season. With the addition of Shawn Marion and the playmaking abilities of future Hall of Famer Jason Kidd, Gooden will probably get a few easy points close to the hoop on most nights. Similarly, Dirk Nowitzki will draw opposing power-forwards to the perimeter giving Drew Gooden much space in the low-post area. Taking everything into consideration it appears like Marc Cuban has already taken two big steps this summer and will most likely have to tackle Dallas’ shooting guard problem over the coming weeks.
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Tags: Marcin Gortat, Erick Dampier, Drew Gooden, NBA, Memphis Grizzlies, Shawn Marion, Jason Kidd, Dirk Nowitzki, Marc Cuban, Dallas Mavericks
Posted: 27th July 2009
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