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07/16/2013

A new Maverick worth getting excited about

Jose-calderon-signs-mavericksDALLAS, Texas - Agreed ... the free agent additions by your Dallas Mavericks are about as exciting as boring and dull. No Dwight Howard and no Chris Paul = zzzz.

And while you are probably crushed the team isn't tanking it in a deliberate attempt to win the lottery and land Kansas freshman Andrew Wiggins, we all need to accept that competitive will have to suffice.

There is good news in that the team has a real point guard.

The addition of Jose Calderon is a dramatic upgrade over Darren Collison and the rest of the other spares this team tried at point guard last season. By the end of last season, Vince Carter was the team's best point guard. It was no secret the Mavs' problems at point guard drove coach Rick Carlisle bonkers; he was spoiled after having Jason Kidd, who was a born point guard.

Is the four-year, $29 million deal Calderon signed too much? Yes, yes and way yes. He's not worth it, but this is the price you pay when you shop in NBA free agency, also known as Neiman Marcus. Most guys get too much.

Calderon protects the ball as well as any player in the NBA, and is a solid passer. He has averaged 10.1 points and 7.2 assists per game in his career. He also shot 46% from 3-point range last season. Those numbers are solid; that he averages only 1.7 turnovers is most impressive.

"He is one of the best assist/turnover guys we've seen in decades," Mavs coach Rick Carlisle told me. "He can adapt to any situation. He's one of the fastest guys in the league. He's going to be super solid."

At a minimum, the veteran free agent signee from the Detroit Pistons should be able to get the ball to Dirk Nowtizki where he wants it, and not turn it over when the game matters.

But, no, he's not Dwight or CP3.

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