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Brendan Haywood reaches deal to return to Dallas

Jul 8, 2010, 2:05 PM EDT

bhaywood.jpgDallas gets it. Miami is about to get it — you need a big man to go alongside your flashy, scoring power forward.

Brendan Haywood is a big man, and he is going to continue playing alongside Dirk Nowitzki for the next couple years. He has agreed to a six-year, $55 million deal with the Mavericks, according to Marc Spears at Yahoo.

Eric Dampier is still the biggest center on the Mavericks’ roster, but his $13 million 2010-2011 salary is unguaranteed, meaning a team could cut him without paying him anything at all. Dallas has been using that as a trade chip with teams trying to bring back some talent that will get the Mavericks over the hump in the West. And by hump we mean the Lakers.

Haywood is an above-average center — he shoots at a good percentage (56 percent with the Mavericks last year), can rebound well and is a solid defender. He’s better than Dampier, and he makes the Mavericks better.

Dallas knows this — they have a bunch of advanced stats to confirm what their eyes see — and that’s why they made Haywood a priority. He was the first visit for coach Rich Carlisle once free agency opened.

The only question is the six years — Haywood will be 36 years old at the end of this deal. They may be looking to trade that salary by then.

But for now, this is a solid signing for Dallas. Mark Cuban, however, wants more than solid. This is a team still looking to make a big move.

  1. Josh - Jul 8, 2010 at 2:22 PM

    The entire $13 million owed to Dampier is non-guaranteed. No buyout required.

  2. GetReal - Jul 8, 2010 at 3:13 PM

    Cheap shot at Miami. You have no idea what their plans are, Free Agency is barely a week old, but I love how you’re predicting a team with 2 and possibly 3 of the top 10 players in the league are going to struggle.

  3. GetReal - Jul 8, 2010 at 3:38 PM

    Also, didn’t LA just win the title with Bynum hardly playing in the playoffs?

  4. fxderod - Jul 8, 2010 at 3:45 PM

    Smart move. Dallas did win 13 games straight when Dampier got hurt then got blew out by 30 points when he entered back in rotation.
    The Lakers won the finals because of Bynum,Gasol, and Odom’s lenght Bynum was a presence in the paint.
    Michael Jordan’s Bulls were the last team to win without a good big man.

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