Mavericks Whiff on Williams, Nash and Kidd, Time for Rodrigue Beaubois?

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Mavericks Whiff on Williams, Nash and Kidd, Time for Rodrigue Beaubois?
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The Dallas Mavericks put a lot of stock into their attempt to land Deron Williams this offseason. He re-signed with the Nets. They figured they had a pretty secure Plan B with Steve Nash. He's headed to Los Angeles to play with Kobe Bryant. And yesterday, Plan C (to re-sign Jason Kidd) fell through as well. He's headed for a reunion with Tyson Chandler in New York.

Mark Cuban and the Mavericks have had quite possibly the worst offseason of any team in the NBA in 2012. Not only did they miss out on all those big name guards, they haven't landed a single player they've targeted to this point. Brandon Roy is headed to Minnesota, and Chris Kaman and Ramon Sessions remain unsigned.

Even if Dallas does land those two solid players, this offseason would still have to be considered a failure.

So what do the Mavericks do now? Right now, it looks like yet another year of waiting and hoping while Dirk Nowitzki gets older. They'll certainly take a run at Chris Paul and Dwight Howard next summer, but it's hard to see either one of those big names ending up in Dallas. Brooklyn, New York and Los Angeles seem to be more appealing to the league's superstars right now.

In the era of rosters being assembled around a "Big Three" or as a "Superteam", the Mavericks may not be in the right spot to continue competing the way they have in the past (chasing big names in free agency and through trades).

It may be time to adapt the model that has been so successful for the San Antonio Spurs and Oklahoma City Thunder: growing the franchise from within through savvy drafting and player development.

That process can start with Rodrigue Beaubois. The 24-year old point guard whom Dallas acquired on draft night in 2009 has long been touted as a player with great potential and someone who would be a key part of Dallas's future.

Well, the time for touting has passed. The time for production is here. If the Mavericks are going to play the waiting game for one more season, they might as well see what they have in Beaubois in the meantime. 

Roddy Buckets (as he's sometimes affectionately known among Mavericks fans) has shown flashes of what he can be in a not-so-prominent role over three NBA seasons.

As a rookie, he averaged over 20 points per 36 minutes and shot over 50 percent from the field and 40 percent from three-point range. His scoring numbers have gone down a bit as Dallas has worked to mold him into a point guard. That transformation is starting to take shape, as Beaubois averaged five assists per 36 minutes last year.

Physically, he's as good as any point guard on the market this summer. He may not have the girth or strength of Deron Williams, but Beaubois's combination of length and athleticism may only be rivaled by Rajon Rondo.

The young Maverick is listed at 6'3" with a staggering 6'10" wingspan. His max vertical jump was measured at 39 inches during the pre-draft camp, and his agility and sprint times were among the best that year.

But all those physical tools don't mean a whole lot without the basketball fundamentals, skill and IQ necessary to be an effective NBA point guard. That's what Mavericks fans are hoping Beabois has learned from Jason Kidd and Rick Carlisle over the last few years. That's what they're hoping to finally see this season.

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