NBA.com staff report
Ever since Mark Cuban took over as owner of the franchise 19 years ago, the Dallas Mavericks have been a busy squad in free agency. Such appears to be the case again this summer, with Dallas sporting a sizable amount of salary-cap space and several key free agents on Dallas' radar.
Already, the Mavs have been linked in reports to Charlotte Hornets star Kemba Walker and some other free agents appear to be in Dallas' mix as well. Per Brad Townsend of the Dallas Morning News, the Mavericks have interest in LA Clippers guard and defensive ace Patrick Beverley as well as sharp-shooting big man Nikola Mirotic (who split last season between the New Orleans Pelicans and Milwaukee Bucks).
Townsend reports Beverley and the Mavs regard each other as the "perfect fit" (Beverley, in a Q&A with NBA.com, sounded excited about the prospect of playing in Dallas next season). Dallas is expected to meet with Beverley once free agency opens on Sunday (Monday, PHL time), but an appointment between the two has not yet been scheduled, Townsend writes.
As for Mirotic, he is further down on the Mavs' wish list. There have also been talks in the past -- including from the Dallas Morning News -- that Orlando Magic center Nikola Vucevic may be a target for Dallas. However, Vucevic's steep asking price may keep him from landing there, Townsend writes. Here's more:
Of the top 10 free agents and restricted free agents on most lists, the only ones who have strongly been connected to Dallas are Hornets guard Kemba Walker, Vucevic and restricted free agent Kristaps Porzingis, the latter of whom is expected to sign a five-year, $158 million extension to remain a Maverick.
With Vucevic apparently out of the picture, that leaves Walker as the only upper-tier unrestricted free agent widely connected to Dallas -- but it's still early, and the Mavericks have a league-wide reputation for keeping their thinking and maneuvering close to the vest.