Mavericks Rumors: JaVale McGee Agrees to 3-Year, $20.1M Contract Amid Bucks Links

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVJune 30, 2022

Phoenix Suns center JaVale McGee (00) during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Los Angeles Lakers, Tuesday, April 5, 2022, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
AP Photo/Rick Scuteri

The Dallas Mavericks and JaVale McGee reached an agreement on a three-year, $20.1 million contract, per Shams Charania of Stadium and The Athletic.

Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports first reported news of the agreement.

The Milwaukee Bucks also reportedly had interest in the center, per ESPN's Tim MacMahon, but the Mavericks landed the free agent.

McGee joined the Phoenix Suns on a one-year, $5 million contract last offseason. He handled a key reserve role, averaging 9.2 points, 6.7 rebounds and 1.1 blocks across 74 appearances (17 starts) while serving as the chief backup to star center Deandre Ayton.

The 34-year-old Michigan native has also made stops with the Washington Wizards, Denver Nuggets, Philadelphia 76ers, Dallas Mavericks, Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Lakers and Cleveland Cavaliers since being selected in the first round of the 2008 draft.

Even as the NBA has evolved toward post players who can stretch the floor, McGee has illustrated the ability to make an impact as an old-school center.

In April, the three-time NBA champion explained on 98.7 FM Arizona Sports he was brought to Phoenix not only for his on-court impact but also to help provide guidance for Ayton on the "intricacies" of the position.

"That's definitely one of my job descriptions," McGee said. "My job description was to come here and work hard, anchor the defense on the second unit and also mentor Deandre to be a great center, even though he's already a great center at this young age."

While the University of Nevada product has shown he can still play starter-level minutes when injuries arise, that combination of a reserve and leadership role figures to remain his main task for the remainder of his career.

McGee has averaged 8.0 points, 5.3 rebounds and 1.5 blocks in 821 regular-season games across 14 seasons. Along with his NBA titles, he also captured a gold medal as part of Team USA at the 2021 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.

He is a solid addition for the Mavericks for much the same reason he found a comfort zone in Phoenix. He can provide strong defense and efficient offensive contributions while also bringing a battle-hardened leadership voice to the locker room.

McGee should provide some much-needed frontcourt balance for Dallas as the team tries to take the next steep toward contention.