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Shawn Marion to Dallas Mavericks: Cuban Proves Everyday He is Hustlin

SAN ANTONIO - APRIL 18:  Owner Mark Cuban of the Dallas Mavericks before a game with the San Antonio Spurs in Game One of the Western Conference Quarterfinals during the 2009 NBA Playoffs at AT&T Center on April 18, 2009 in San Antonio, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Steve ClemmonsContributor IJuly 8, 2009

Even though I am not a fan of Rick Ross (be who you are, no need to front Officer Ricky...) his song was made famous by Katt Williams, showing what like is like if you lived the words of the song.  His character is hustling, working in an office and a fast food location.  That is the type of attitude that you need to be successful in your job.

Mark Cuban is the Hustler of the NBA.  If you are to fault Mark Cuban, his fault is that he cares.  (Just like the NBA...and the seats) He is the true definition of a fan, as he is fanatical about the Mavericks.

In his neverending quest to push the Mavericks to the promised land, word on the street is that they are trying to land Shawn Marion from the Raptors.  Lets look at this from all parties involved.  ESPN.com reports the rumor...

It appears that the Dallas Mavericks and Toronto Raptors have successfully recruited the Memphis Grizzlies to help them complete a trade that would eventually route free-agent swingman Shawn Marion to the Mavericks, according to NBA front-office sources. ESPN.com

From the Mavericks standpoint, it's clearly necessary.  You need to have more weapons than you have right now.  Marion would give you another player with some bounce still left in his legs. 

You can go small, with the Terry/Kidd back court with the frontcourt of Howard, Marion and Diggler at the five.  That is your fast (relatively speaking, and gets faster with Barea) lineup that you use to outscore other teams.

The starting lineup will most likely look traditional with Kidd/Howard backcourt, with Marion at the three, Dirk at the four, and Damp getting the start at the five (this assumes that the Magic do not match the MLE offer that Mavs made to Marcin Gortat, which is tough, because they are light in the frontcourt, in particular, the backup pivot).

But, the Mavs have incentive to NOT play Damp. Here is an interesting notation about his contract.

http://www.eskimo.com/~pbender/mavs/mavs-news/mavs-con.html#dampier

Erick Dampier

His last year becomes guaranteed if:

a) Dampier is selected to play in any three NBA All-Star Games out of the 2004-2005 through the 2009-2010 seasons, or

b) Dampier plays at least 2,100 minutes in the 70 regular season games in the 2009-2010 season in which he plays the most minutes (and if he plays in less than 70 regular season games in the 2009-2010 season, then he must play at least 2,100 minutes for the entire regular season.)

Year                    GAMES   Minutes

04-05

DAL

59

1609

05-06

DAL

82

1934

06-07

DAL

76

1915

07-08

DAL

72

1755

08-09

DAL

80

1836

Let's do some simple math. There is a maximum of 3936 minutes.  Here are the all time most minutes played in NBA history (excluding ABA records…) thanks basketball-reference.com

NBA

Rank

Player

MP

Season

1.

Wilt Chamberlain*

3882

1961-62

2.

Wilt Chamberlain*

3836

1967-68

3.

Wilt Chamberlain*

3806

1962-63

4.

Wilt Chamberlain*

3773

1960-61

5.

Wilt Chamberlain*

3737

1965-66

We know that Damp is not Wilt.  But, Damp would just have to average 25.6 minutes a game to guarantee the option in his deal for 2010.  Right there, that is reason to run out the small lineup as much as possible. 

With the looming loss of Brandon Bass, the backup power forward slot is important as well.  Adding the fact that the Mavs have signed Gortat to a five year deal, they have every reason to minimize the minutes of Dampier.

If nothing else, you have to like an owner who wants to eliminate earlier mistakes.  While the team will not contend for a championship, the new Mavs of 09-10 will be a fun, hustling, playoff team. 

This is the type of owner I want for my team.  One that is forward thinking, but is also willing to give opportunities for success immediately.  Dirk and Kidd are winding down their careers.  But their games translate well into late career success.

Both are good outside shooters (make you Ason Kidd jokes, get it, no J... but check his three point percentage) and both can rebound.  Cuban has allowed the Mavs to be relevant for the next three years.

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