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Report: Dwight Powell will actually opt in with Mavericks, sign extension

Dallas Mavericks v New York Knicks

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JANUARY 30: Dwight Powell #7 of the Dallas Mavericks celebrates in the third quarter against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden on January 30, 2019 in New York City.NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

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A report that Dwight Powell would opt out of a $10,259,375 salary immediately sparked speculation about a handshake deal to re-sign with the Mavericks. Dallas could guarantee Powell more total compensation on a new contract. In exchange, he’d take a lower salary for next season, when the Mavericks are tying to maximize cap space to build around Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis. Otherwise, why would Powell leave so much money on the table?

Apparently, he won’t.

Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News:

Powell could mesh well with Porzingis as Dallas’ bigs. Powell is more of a rim runner while Porzingis shoots more from the perimeter. Porzingis would cover for Powell’s lackluster rim protection.

But Powell will also turn 28 this summer, and the NBA is overflowing with solid centers. I’d be wary of paying him too much for too long on an extension.

The Mavericks project to have about $29 million in cap space this summer. They would have been better off if Powell opted out and freed another $9 million of room. But there’s also value in having Powell remain on the roster.