The Dallas Mavericks are one of the few teams with meaningful cap space this summer, and they've been after some big names such as Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan. However, it doesn't appear that they're favored to land either of those former All-Stars.
As such, the team is turning its focus to internal matters. When free agency begins, they're expected to quickly come to an agreement with free agent guard Tim Hardaway Jr., according to Marc Stein. Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.com reports that the Mavericks and Hardaway have agreed to a four-year, $74 million contract.
Hardaway came to Dallas as part of the Kristaps Porzingis trade, but after last season you could make a legitimate case that we should start calling it the Hardaway trade. He put up 16.6 points, 3.3 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game, while shooting 39.1 percent from 3-point land on a high volume of attempts.
He was the most reliable role player around Luka Doncic, especially in the playoffs where he helped the team nearly pull off an upset in the first round against the Los Angeles Clippers. Hardaway was the team's second-leading scorer in that series, and put up four 20-point games -- three of which the Mavericks won.
As the Mavericks look to take a step forward and become a real threat in the playoffs instead of just a scrappy underdog, it makes sense that they were looking outside the organization for a big name to help them get there. At the same time, they have to make sure they don't lose a player like Hardaway in the process. He's a 29-year-old wing who fits perfectly alongside Doncic, has shown up in the playoffs and wants to be in Dallas.
"If you talk to anybody that's around me," Hardaway said after the team's season-ending loss to the Clippers, "they would tell you that I love it here in Dallas."
Getting this deal done makes sense for both parties.