ATLANTA, GA - DECEMBER 30: Deron Williams #8 of the New Jersey Nets reacts in the final seconds of their 105-98 loss to the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena on December 30, 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
The Mavericks, Jazz and Clippers completed a relatively minor trade, at least on its face, Friday night. Mo Williams goes from the Clippers to the Jazz, Lamar Odom from the Mavs to the Clippers and $2.4 million in cap space to Dallas. What's the local interest? The Mavericks appear to be clearing enough cap space to sign Deron Williams outright next week without a sign and trade. It will be tight, but increasingly it looks likely they can do it. Whether it will work for D-Will or Plan "B", Steve Nash, has yet to be determined. It should be noted, however, that Odom and Williams share an agent.
John Hollinger writes, "Combined with a draft-day deal that sent out Kelenna Azubuike and his guaranteed $1 million-plus contract, the Mavs head into free agency with $8.5 million in cap space," adding that one stroke of the amnesty pen the number can be doubled. Brendan Haywood can and probably will be dumped. "The big-picture math is that they can create enough space to get one max-contract free agent -- and nothing more."