The Dallas Mavericks weren’t a lock to get either LeBron James or Carmelo Anthony. Plan B was always the imminent possibility, and the top option for said plan was finding a way lure Chandler Parsons away from the rival Houston Rockets.
It appears that may be closer to reality.
The Mavs, like the rest of the league, are waiting on pins and needles on where LeBron or Carmelo will play next season. Chris Bosh seems to have had enough of playing the waiting game and is “seriously considering” a four-year, $88 million max contract from the Rockets.
Dallas has been playing quiet for most of free agency. They’ve now picked the right time to strike.
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reported on Monday that the Mavs are pursuing an offer sheet in an attempt to lure the star restricted free agent away from Dallas’ in-state rival.
I highlighted about a month ago that Parsons should be the Mavs’ ideal Plan B if they miss on Carmelo. With the growing possibility of the reigning scoring champ either heading back to New York or going to Los Angeles (or Chicago, or Miami or insert-team-here), the Rockets are in hot pursuit of possibly landing Bosh and are fully committed to giving him that max contract he requests.
With Parsons being a restricted free agent, Houston has every right to match any offer for him — that is, of course, if they have the funds to do it. If Bosh goes to Houston, the Rockets have no money to match any offer coming Parsons’ way even if they do unload Jeremy Lin via trade.
Here’s the short of it. If Bosh is a Rocket by July 10 and signs a max contract — he’d make about $20.5 million in the first year of the deal — that’s about $55 million committed between Bosh, James Harden and Dwight Howard.
If you figure Parsons will get about $10 million a year on his next contract, there’s no way the Rockets find a way to keep him.
This was the risk the Rockets were going to run into by making Parsons a restricted free agent. They decided to get greedy and go the Miami Heat’s route of adding stars worth endless amounts of money.
Now, a key piece in their future plans has Houston scrambling, and the Mavs sit with the chance to steal Parsons from under the rug.
Let’s be clear: Dallas isn’t the only team wanting Parsons. There are plenty of teams who want a young player who hasn’t even entered his prime yet and has all the tools of being an All-Star.
The major hurdle in all of this is would Parsons be willing to accept going to Dallas. Him and Dirk Nowitzki have become good friends, and Parsons has participated in Dirk’s Heroes Celebrity Baseball game the last couple of years.
So the possibility of Parsons making that three-hour commute to Dallas is very much alive.
And even if the Rockets do match Parsons’ offer? Hey, that’s a win for the Mavs, too.
That means Dallas called Houston’s bluff on any pursuit of a max-deal player. And if the Mavs feel they called Houston’s bluff, then they can go ahead and offer the $9 million or so for someone like Ariza.
But by the time we get to July 10, we’ll have a clearer vision on what the Rockets want to do. As for the Mavs? They may want to send Bosh a thank-you card for helping bring in Dallas’ future.