GO TO: PROJECTED STARTERS RESERVES
Here are our player scouting reports and 2013-14 projections for the Dallas Mavericks. (Note: Kevin Pelton's stat projections are for players expected to play 250 or more minutes in '13-14.)
JOSE CALDERON, PG
+ One of the NBA's top playmaking point guards and pick-and-roll operators.
+ Consistently shoots a high percentage overall with elite efficiency beyond the arc.
+ A defensive liability who isn't a match for NBA-caliber point guards.
The Mavericks struggled at point guard last season, with Darren Collison proving to be an ill fit and veteran journeyman Mike James ultimately starting 23 games at age 37. Calderon is on the wrong side of 30, but his four-year, $29 million deal isn't a cap killer and he's got a wide enough base of skills that he should find ways to contribute through the life of the pact. Over the next couple of seasons, Calderon should give the Mavericks their best playmaker they've had since Jason Kidd was their primary ballhandler, a pick-and-roll maestro who'll help get the ball to Dirk Nowitzki in his favorite spots. Calderon's assist rate has been better than 10 percent in each of the last seven seasons, and for someone who has handled the ball so often in his career, his turnover rate is generally very good.
As one of the game's best shooters, Calderon has a lot to offer the Mavericks' attack even when he isn't directing the offense. Calderon posted a career-best .616 true shooting percentage last season and knocked down 46.1 percent from beyond the arc. While those are numbers that scream for regression, his career .576 true shooting percentage is a terrific baseline. Calderon is a great shooter off the dribble, one of the traits that makes him so dangerous in the pick-and-roll, but he ranked in the 99th percentile by averaging 1.38 points per play in catch-and-shoot situations last season, per Synergy Sports. The ability to shoot such a high percentage whether off the bounce, standing still, guarded or unguarded, means even when the pick-and-roll isn't called, Calderon will remain a prime threat playing off the ball alongside attacking combo guard Monta Ellis.
Unfortunately, he's also a threat on the defensive end -- to the Mavs. Over the past two seasons, he has given up 64 points above average, using Synergy's points-per-play baselines. That rates in just the sixth percentile of defenders during that time. During Calderon's stint with the Pistons, Detroit was torched to the tune of 113.2 points per 100 possessions with him on the court.
MONTA ELLIS, G
+ Lightning-fast volume scorer with combo guard skills.
+ Poor shot selection and tendency to overreach skill set has led to increasing inefficiency.
+ Disruptive defensive force in passing lanes, but short arms limits ability to contest shots.