The Dallas Mavericks declined keeping their 2011 championship team intact because the new collective bargaining agreement had become too restrictive to luxury-tax paying teams. They let Tyson Chandler sign with the New York Knicks and J.J. Barea sign with the Minnesota Timberwolves. Soon the core was depleted and they were trying to figure out how to remain competitive while remaining flexible for the future.
The future has always included trying to bring in a big free agent. The Mavericks unsuccessfully courted Deron Williams last summer and are turning their attention toward Los Angeles Lakers' free-agent center Dwight Howard this summer. Part of trying to make Howard want to come to Dallas is wooing him with members of the organization. Dirk Nowitzki is up for the challenge of reaching out to Howard and has done so. From ESPN Dallas:
"I reached out to him and told him we'd love to have him," Nowitzki said Thursday night. "That's really about it. It's not like we call each other every day."
Grinning, Nowitzki added, "I haven't written him a letter. We've just had a little phone contact, and that's about it."
I really think Dirk Nowitzki should write Dwight Howard a letter. The phone is nice, but showing the time and effort of putting pen to paper and sealing it with wax shows that you really want to play basketball with someone.
This is going to be the dance for the next couple weeks. As Dwightmare 2.0 ramps up, NBA players from courting teams will reach out to Howard and make him feel wanted. He'll be wined and dined by the finest those respective cities have to offer. Then he'll be forced to make up his mind between the Los Angeles Lakers, Houston Rockets, Atlanta Hawks, Dallas Mavericks and other teams interested in his services.
Someone get Dirk a stamp.