The Dallas Mavericks are turning to a familiar face in veteran big man Sam Dalembert as they seek to dig their way out of the hole created by DeAndre Jordan’s unexpected decision to renege on his verbal commitment.
With Jordan staying in Los Angeles, the market of available big men isn’t very deep. Nonetheless, owner Mark Cuban is trying to make the best of his situation.
Free agent center Sam Dalembert has reached agreement on a one-year deal with the Dallas Mavericks, league sources tell Yahoo Sports.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 25, 2015
“Dalembert played for coach Rick Carlisle two years ago in Dallas, and will get an opportunity to play a significant role at center for the Mavericks,” Wojnarowski reports.
Dalembert, now 34 years old, averaged 6.6 points and 6.8 rebounds in 20 minutes per game with the Mavericks in the 2013-14 season, when Dallas was a playoff team. Those numbers regressed to 4.0 points and 5.3 rebounds in 17 minutes during Dalembert’s brief stint with the New York Knicks last season.
The Mavs shipped Dalembert to the Knicks as part of the deal that brought Tyson Chandler to Dallas last offseason. But Chandler departed for the Phoenix Suns during Cuban’s pursuit of Jordan earlier this month, and the Mavs had very few options left following Jordan’s last-minute change of heart.
Dalembert will join Zaza Pachulia, acquired in a recent trade with Milwaukee, in the Mavericks’ center rotation for next season.
In his 13 NBA seasons, the 6-foot-11 Dalembert has averaged 7.7 points, 7.8 rebounds and 1.7 blocks in 24 minutes per game.
Ben DuBose is a veteran sports reporter who has followed the Houston Rockets and the NBA since Hakeem Olajuwon was Akeem Olajuwon. He writes for both SheridanHoops and ClutchFans, an independent Rockets blog. You can follow him on Twitter.