The NBA’s Dallas Mavericks informed their veteran star Dirk Nowitzki that they would decline their option of $25 million for the 2017-18 season with an intention of re-signing the veteran to another contract, says league sources.
Thursday is the deadline for the Mavericks to notify league officials of their intent regarding Nowitzki’s second year of his two-year current deal for $50 million he signed in July of last year.
However, NBA sources have said that Dallas will work next month with Nowitzki to structure another deal that the veteran likes.
A deal of two-years is one option being considered, said sources, even though the veteran has stated clearly he wants to make his decision of playing on the basis of season by season due to his age.
The plan by the Mavericks, according to a source is to do what Nowitzki wants. The forward turned 39 a week ago and will tie former star Kobe Bryant of the Lakers for the longest tenure in league history of 20 seasons with only one team.
Dallas was 33-49 last season which was the team’s worst record in 20 seasons and the season they acquired Nowitzki No. 9 overall in June of 1998. Dallas started last season 4-17 and could not recover.
Nowitzki had injuries last season, but was able to overcome them and reach 30,000 points for his career to become the No. 6 all-time scorer in league history.
Dallas has a priority this offseason of re-signing Nerlens Noels its center who is a restricted free agent and of solidifying its young core that includes Noel, Seth Curry, Harrison Barnes as well as Dennis Smith Jr. who they drafted last week.
No marquee free agents are in their plans for the offseason, despite rumored interest in Jrue Holliday the unrestricted free agent who played last season with New Orleans.
Nowitzki told team officials after the end of the regular season that he was comfortable with the direction the franchise has taken despite there being a possible long road to contending for the Western Conference crown.
Last season was also the first time the Mavericks had a losing record in the 17 complete seasons that Mark Cuban has been their owner.
Dallas has missed the postseason twice over the last five seasons after 11 straight seasons with 50 or more wins.