Meet the Mavs: Devin Harris
Role for Mavs in 2013-14: Once Harris gets healthy, the Mavs plan to use him as the third guard. He’ll get backup minutes at point guard and shooting guard.
Owner Mark Cuban is especially excited about a “lightning backcourt” pairing Harris with Monta Ellis, putting two penetrators on the floor together. However, the Mavs’ original plan for Harris -- before they knew he needed toe surgery and signed Ellis -- was for him to start at shooting guard next to Jose Calderon.
What happened this summer?: Harris’ return to Dallas took an unfortunate twist for him. He originally agreed to a three-year, $9 million deal, but the parties mutually agreed to take that offer off the table when a pre-signing physical screening revealed that he needed toe surgery. That freed up enough space to squeeze Ellis under the salary cap. Harris accepted a one-year, minimum-salary deal, which was all the Mavs could offer at that point for a player who was popular in Dallas before being the centerpiece of the package sent to New Jersey for Jason Kidd in 2008.
What does the future hold?: Harris will test free agency again next summer. The Mavs clearly have a level of interest in him beyond this season, but how high that is depends on his health and performance among other factors.
Bottom line: He’s an injury-prone veteran on a prove-it contract who should be a contributor off the bench for the majority of the season.
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