Mavericks Notes: New CEO, Smith Jr., Noel, Collinsworth

The Mavericks will hold a press conference Monday to introduce Cynthia Marshall as their interim CEO, according to Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today. The former AT&T executive is being hired to clean up the franchise in the wake of sexual assault and domestic violence allegations that emerged this week.

Marshall served as vice president of human resources and chief diversity officer for the communications company. She was selected as one of the 50 most powerful women in corporate America in 2015 by Black Enterprise magazine.

There’s more news tonight out of Dallas:

  • For the first time since he started playing basketball, Dennis Smith Jr. is being asked to handle a position other than point guard, writes Eddie Sefko of The Dallas Morning News. Coach Rick Carlisle has shifted Smith to shooting guard in the starting lineup to make room for J.J. Barea, and the rookie’s numbers have declined in the two games since the move. “He’s learning a lot,” said Carlisle, who sees long-term benefits from Smith understanding the position. “And in this league, often times the most growth comes from the greatest struggles. He’s got to go through some of these things. But it’s tough right now. It’s tough for the whole team. That’s where we are. I thought he gave good effort.”
  • Backup center Nerlens Noel expects a larger dose of playing time when he returns from thumb surgery, according to The Dallas Morning News. During a recent appearance on Kevin Hart’s YouTube show, Noel responded, “I’m expecting to get a lot of games,” when asked what Mavericks owner Mark Cuban could give him that he didn’t get in Philadelphia. Noel dropped out of Dallas’ rotation early in the season, then suffered a thumb injury in a November 22 game. He could return as early as Monday.
  • Rookie forward Kyle Collinsworth tells Ryan McDonald of The Deseret News he never lost faith that he could reach the NBA. Undrafted out of BYU, Collinsworth spent a season in the G League before signing a two-way contract with the Mavericks, then earning a multiyear deal earlier this month. “It’s been a roller coaster, but I think the biggest thing I’ve been able to do is believe,” he said. “Believe when things were good, believe when things were bad. Never lost my belief, never lost my goal, and I just kept working and kept believing. I stayed consistent with my routine, with all the little things that I do that I believe give me an edge to be here. I just kept at it.”
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