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Even if the Mavericks strike out in the Chris Paul/Dwight Howard sweepstakes, they still will be looking to land an All-Star-caliber player this offseason.
After Paul and Howard, the next group of players they may look at includes: O.J. Mayo, Brandon Jennings, Monta Ellis, Andre Iguodala, Al Jefferson, Paul Pierce, David West, Andrew Bynum and Josh Smith.
Of that list, the player who makes the least sense for the Mavericks to bring in is Smith.
While Smith certainly is a star in the NBA, he just would not fit playing next to Dirk Nowitzki.
With Dirk locked into the power forward position, Smith would have to move over to small forward, a position that he has had less success with during his career with the Atlanta Hawks.
Smith split time between small forward and power forward, but he is able to make a bigger impact defensively and in rebounding the ball when he plays the 4.
In addition, the Mavericks already having a capable small forward in Shawn Marion, and moving him to the bench would make little sense.
Then, there is the issue of money. Smith, to his credit, is a top-level NBA player; but is he worth a max-level contract? He certainly thinks so.
Smith is asking for around $16.5 million a season, and the Mavericks simply cannot put that much money into a player like Smith, who is not a superstar.
Even when playing beside Joe Johnson, Smith was never able to lead the Hawks past the second round of the playoffs. As athletic as he is, he doesn't have a good enough jump shot or a solid enough post game to get into the 20-points-per-game range.
This is not meant to be a knock on Smith, as he will undoubtedly make a serious impact wherever he signs, but the Mavericks would be smart not to rush to overpay for Smith if their Plan A in free agency doesn't work out.