In a move perhaps more evident of the Dallas Mavericks increasing age and veteran experience than on-court performance, point guard Jason Kidd will take his talents to the Team USA sidelines for the first time in his career. In what could be viewed as a rebuilding squad for America’s team, Kidd provides veteran leadership and international competition savvy without playing a single minute in upcoming games and events. Not to say that Kidd couldn’t hang with the youngsters, as he still remains a valuable contributor under contract with the Mavs for the upcoming season and beyond, but as Team USA looks to replace its nucleus of previous years, the organization will look to let a new generation of superstars blossom together.The Mavericks lack of representation on the Team USA roster, aside from recently acquired center Tyson Chandler (potentially a one-year rental), reflects both a blessing and a curse regarding their lineup for the upcoming season. While the Mavs have big name players returning to suit up for the 2009-2010 season, they currently lack a young, explosive centerpiece to build around, instead relying on the continued play of crafty vets to prolong their winning ways. So far this has been a sound strategy, as Dallas has successfully advanced to the playoffs every year since 2001-2002. However, the team has failed to deliver an NBA Championship, despite coming close in 2005-2006 before falling to Miami in the NBA Finals. Still, few franchises have enjoyed the success of the Mavericks over the course of decade. Unfortunately, the Mavs window may soon be closing as the likes of Kidd and SF Dirk Nowitzki, who just signed a 4-year re-up deal, continue to add years. The current roster also features former All-Stars Shawn Marion and Caron Butler, both closer to the end of their playing careers than beginning. While the Mavericks should once again prove to be a competitive unit, it’s important to savor these days as the squad may have less fortunate outlooks as its key contributors decline in the near future.
August 18, 2010
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