Warriors owner Joe Lacob and GM Bob Myers have bounced around the idea of adding the Mavericks’ longtime franchise player, who is expected to opt out of his contract and become an unrestricted free agent, Kawakami continues. Nowitzki made just $8,333,334 last season in a team-friendly deal that helped them sign free agents Wesley Matthews and Chandler Parsons. He is scheduled to make $8,692,184 next season.
Lacob told reporters after Game 7 of the NBA Finals on Sunday, including ESPN’s Marc Stein, that the club will be “very aggressive” in pursuing roster changes this offseason.
Nowitzki could be the team’s starting center in place of Andrew Bogut, or head the second unit as an upgrade over Marreese Speights or Festus Ezeli, Kawakami points out. However, landing Durant is the top priority while Nowitzki would be a next-tier discussion for the Warriors, who are unsure if Nowitzki would seriously consider leaving Dallas after spending his entire career there, Kawakami adds.
As Eddie Sefko of The Dallas Morning News recently reported, Nowitzki was leaning toward signing a two- or three-year deal with the Mavericks. But if Nowitzki believes the franchise is too far away from serious title contention, he may be persuaded to join a team like the Warriors in pursuit of a second ring. The Mavericks defeated the Heat in the 2011 Finals.
Dallas was 42-40 this past season and lost in the opening round of the playoffs after its top free agent target last summer, DeAndre Jordan, spurned them at the last minute and rejoined the Clippers.