DALLAS -- Because they would be fined maybe $1 million by the NBA for tamperirng, the Dallas Mavericks didn't send soon-to-be free agent Deron Williams any happy birthday wishes when the Brookyln Nets point guard turned 28 this past Tuesday.
But that didn't stop the professional sports team to the West of Dallas from lending a friendly hand.
During Tuesday night's game against the Detroit Tigers, a sign went up on the scoreboard wishing Williams happy birthday. It was followed by the captain that read: "Be A Maverick!"
The good gesture didn't go unnoticed by the Mavs' organization.
Mavs general manager Donnie Nelson said: "For our friends up the street, the Rangers, that was a very nice touch and much appreciated.''
For their part, the Nets sent a flatbed truck and parked it outside of Williams' New York apartment Tuesday. On the back of the truck read: "Happy Birthday Deron! from your Brooklyn family.''
Nets coach Avery Johnson attended a small private birthday party for Williams on Tuesday in New York. Nelson, though, said he never got an invitation to that exclusive party.
Nelson also said: "Because it would have cost me $1 million.''
Williams is this summer's hottest free agent, with the Mavs and Nets the two front-runners vying for his services.
-- Dwain Price
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