Movers and shakers? Let the speculation begin. As the Mavs slink off to a disappointing off-season, here are some players whose names you might hear bandied around in relation to the Mavs. They're all long shots to join the team, but that doesn't make it any less fun to talk about.
Some guys to look at: Mike Bibby, Jermaine O'Neal, Jason Kidd, Rashard Lewis, Ray Allen, Andrei Kirilenko and Kevin Garnett.
The upsetting ingredients: Oh, that Nellie. From the moment he walked into American Airlines Center with his band of "schmoes" and a big bag o' psychological mumbo-jumbo, Golden State coach Don Nelson turned this series upside-down and the Mavericks inside-out.
"Nellie's full of it," is all Dirk Nowitzki could say when the top-seeded Mavs trailed No. 8 seed Golden State 3-1 before eventually bowing out 4-2 Thursday night.
Report Card: Dirk Nowitzki. Regular season: A, Playoffs: D. Followed up an MVP-caliber regular season with the worst playoff run of his career. More alarming than losing his shot was the loss of confidence. Status: Signed through 2010-11*
Josh Howard. Regular season: A, Playoffs: B. Developed into an All-Star and had the most consistent playoff run, although he didn't ratchet up his game when those around him faltered. Status: Signed through! 2010-11**
Quote board: What the Mavs are saying: "Now I realize that not everybody can fulfill his dream, not everybody is going to win the championship. That shows how hard it is in this league to win a championship." -- Dirk Nowitzki, projected MVP in an Arizona Republic poll of award voters.
"Ninety-nine percent of what went wrong is my fault. Don't blame the players, blame it all on me. It's not Dirk Nowitzki. It's not Jet Terry. I'm the coach of the team, and I'm supposed to figure out how to make them make shots and layups and free throws, don't blow assignments on defense. It has nothing to do with anybody but me." -- Avery Johnson.