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Old 08-04-2003, 04:52 PM   #1
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Default Vladimir Stepania



Position: C
Born: 05/08/76
Height: 7-1 / 2,16
Weight: 255 lbs. / 115,7 kg.
From: Republic of Georgia

Ranks #17 in the NBA in Offensive Rebounds(211.0)
Ranks #16 in the NBA in Offensive Rebounds Per Game(2.7)
Ranks #2 in the NBA in Offensive Rebounds Per 48 Minutes(6.4)
Ranks #8 in the NBA in Defensive Rebounds Per 48 Minutes(10.3)
Ranks #2 in the NBA in Rebounds Per 48 Minutes(16.7)

Could Step be the best free agent center still out there? According to the Miami Sun Sentinel, he's turning down the Heat's offer and is looking for around $4 Mil per year. (see around the NBA section)
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Old 08-04-2003, 04:57 PM   #2
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Default Vladimir Stepania

If Cuban is willing to pay the 4 mil + plus the 4 mil in luxary tax then I wouldn't mind having the guy.
He could compete for a starting spot and at worst be a viable option off the bench at center.
But I don't think Cuban wants to pay 8 million a year for that.
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Old 08-04-2003, 04:58 PM   #3
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Why not go after Stepania, he would be a nice compliment, if the Mavs were to trade Lafrentz. Sign Stepania b4 the Spurs/Lakers/Kings/Twolves sign him[img]i/expressions/face-icon-small-confused.gif[/img]
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Old 08-04-2003, 05:21 PM   #4
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Default Vladimir Stepania

The guy is a great rebounder, a banger, and has a mean streak. Why not?

Honestly, if he's looking for a 2 year, $8 millon deal like Campbell got, why not give it to him? That's not a long-term commitment, unlike the Mavericks' commitment to every other center they have, and they get the MLE for a reason -- to use it.

Sure, Cuban will have to pay the luxury tax. But if he's not willing to spend the money to improve the team, then why did the Mavericks tell us they planned on using both exceptions in the first place?

I honestly could live with it if the following happened:

Sign Stepania to a contract for the majority of the MLE.
Sign Raja Bell back with the 1.5.
Trade LaFrentz and Avery Johnson for Brian Grant.

Lineup:

Bradley - Stepania - Eschmeyer
Grant - Najera
Nowitzki - Howard
Finley - Bell
Nash - Van Exel

You still have Van Exel around to use in another trade, if necessary. You've jettisoned Raef's contract. Your starting lineup is better. Your rebounding is excellent. You still lack a premiere perimeter defender, but you have an extra guy in Howard to throw into the "perimeter defense" mix. You could probably still sign Adrian Griffin back as a 12th man just to guard Kobe when we play the Lakers.

I could live with this. Of our chief competitors for the title in the West, only Sacramento has a small forward that could burn Dirk on the perimeter. I think Dirk works at SF. Also, by putting Dirk at SF, you have an excellent rebounding team. Dirk gets 10, Grant gets 10, Bradley gets 6-7. Stepania should get you 6-7 off the bench, Najera should manage 3, and Howard should get 2-3. That's at least 37 rebounds a game from your frontcourt. With even 10 rebounds from the backcourt (5 from Finley, at least 5 from the other 3), you're a damn good rebounding team.

This is starting to grow on me. At least you've transformed into a damn good rebounding team, you've added bulk inside (Grant and Stepania), and you should have a somewhat more rugged team.
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Old 08-04-2003, 05:26 PM   #5
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Default Vladimir Stepania

I think they have to go after this guy now before somebody else does it. I do not want the mavs to wait till Feb 21 and then give lame excuses at the end of the season that "CURRENT SET OF PLAYERS HAVE NOT PLAYED FULL SEASON TOGETHER AND THUS WE NEED TO GIVE THEM ANOTHER CHANCE".
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Old 08-04-2003, 05:47 PM   #6
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Stepania is a good player for us.
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Old 08-04-2003, 05:53 PM   #7
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Default RE: Vladimir Stepania

Stepania is The One.

(For the Mavs today)

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Old 08-04-2003, 08:54 PM   #8
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Please don't look at the player acquisition period as being up when the season starts. Trades can be made up until the Feb trade deadline and adding payroll makes just that much tougher to make a deal. Unless you can sign the guy for one year and make him a part of a mid season deal it doesn't make much sense. Don't make a move for the sake of making a move. Mavericks will still have a team vying for the top spot. Who did we lose to last year? The top contenders in the west. We may still lose to those teams but will continue to beat the have nots of the east and the wannabes in the west. I see alot of panic on this board. Relax people, the Mavs will be fine and will make the right moves when the time comes. I was upset when we didn't land anyone that would help but to just get someone because they are available is not the way to go. Raef Lafrentz is better than this guy. He will certainly improve and please consider he is still young. He will be given more of an opportunity to score inside and not be asked to hang out 18-23 feet away from the basket as much. No to Stephania and yes to giving Raef another opportunity to show what he can do. Unless we can trade for a true center/banger I don't really see the point.
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Old 08-04-2003, 09:26 PM   #9
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Please don't look at the player acquisition period as being up when the season starts. Trades can be made up until the Feb trade deadline and adding payroll makes just that much tougher to make a deal.

Mark? Mark Cuban? Is that you? Honestly, if you're not him, you sound just like him. Adding payroll doesn't make it any tougher to make a deal. The Mavs are currently $38 million over the cap. How does going further over the cap hurt? Only one way. Mark Cuban's pocket. And he has told us many times before that money was no object.

Unless you can sign the guy for one year and make him a part of a mid season deal it doesn't make much sense.

Huh? If the guy can give you 5 points and 7 rebounds per game in 20 minutes of playing time, I'd say it's worth it. Combine that with the 7/7 Shawn is likely to put up, and you have a decent 12 points and an excellent 14 rebounds out of the center position.

Don't make a move for the sake of making a move. Mavericks will still have a team vying for the top spot.

I swear, you must be Cuban. Mark, why haven't you been responding to my emails, man?

Who did we lose to last year? The top contenders in the west. We may still lose to those teams but will continue to beat the have nots of the east and the wannabes in the west. I see alot of panic on this board. Relax people, the Mavs will be fine and will make the right moves when the time comes.

Dude, just get your username changed, because you are definitely Cuban.

The Mavs don't need to make any additions to be a very good team. You're right about that. But if they want to be a legit championship contender, they need to make moves. And why should we relax and trust them to maket he right moves "when the time comes?" They told us before July 1 that we should relax because they were going to have a productive summer. What has it produced? Nada. Nothing. Zilch.

Stepania can be a relatively low risk investment for the Mavericks. But it will require Mark Cuban to spend money, something he doesn't really appear willing to do.

Brian Grant can be had if the Mavericks are willing to give up something decent, like LaFrentz. But they can't get him for a package of Esch, Williams, and Rigaudeaux. Or somesuch. You have to give to get, and swapping Raef for Grant just makes a lot of sense.

I was upset when we didn't land anyone that would help but to just get someone because they are available is not the way to go.

Unless they might could actually help, which Stepania could.

Raef Lafrentz is better than this guy.

Possibly, but we're not talking about trading LaFrentz for him. You could theoretically have both.

He will certainly improve and please consider he is still young.

Hell, he's virtually an All-Star. Why do we even need help inside?

He will be given more of an opportunity to score inside and not be asked to hang out 18-23 feet away from the basket as much.

Really? Says who? You?

No to Stephania and yes to giving Raef another opportunity to show what he can do. Unless we can trade for a true center/banger I don't really see the point.

Raef and Stepania are not mutually exclusive. Even if the Mavs keep Raef, they could start Raef at PF if they acquired Stepania, theoretically.

Stepania seems to me to be a true center. He's 7'1", 255 lbs. He also seems to be a banger. He crashes the glass and throws his body around. He's just the kind of guy the Mavs could use off the bench. Why are you so against him?

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Old 08-04-2003, 09:40 PM   #10
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Yes, says me. More of an opportunity to play in the paint. I think you'll see a change of philosophy on the offensive end to include more chances there for Raef. Raef blocks shots on the weakside and straight up against his man more than he is given credit for on the defensive end. I understand Stepania gets good rebounds per minutes but is this against front line guys? NO. Is it against Shaq and Duncan and Garnett in the West. Spares in the east. You are overselling this guy big time. It is assumed here that if Raef is not here he has been traded for someone who can help in the middle and the 7'1" overrated Stepania on this board will not be needed. Please remember if you are paying this guy essentially EIGHT MILLION BUCKS a year when considering tax implications that a deal to take on bad contracts to get a guy we really want ain't gonna happen. We have enough of those already. Does Stepania get you to the NBA Finals? HELL NO!!! So what's the point? If you can answer that question I really don't see how you can justify the signing. P.S. You can't.
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Old 08-04-2003, 09:59 PM   #11
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Default Vladimir Stepania

As championed by Rhylan, it is patently unfair to say it costs $8M for Stepania. Stepania is not the reason we are hopelessly above the luxury tax. It is the combined total of all of the salaries. If that were the case, why is Stepania to be singled out? AJ costs $11M. Wahed costs $12M. Beloved Raef costs $14M and Finley costs $26M.

If the team insists on continuing the delusional notion that it needs to get an $8M player for $4M in salary and $4M in luxury taxes, then this team will never improve.
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Old 08-04-2003, 10:10 PM   #12
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Yes, says me. More of an opportunity to play in the paint. I think you'll see a change of philosophy on the offensive end to include more chances there for Raef.

So tell me WHY you believe that. Have you ever seen Raef LaFrentz post up in a Mavericks uniform? I think I've seen it happen one time in a year and a half. Explain to me why you believe next year will be completely different.

Raef blocks shots on the weakside and straight up against his man more than he is given credit for on the defensive end.

Actually, he gets credit for every block he makes. And his block totals were down drastically last year. Yet, we all know Raef can block shots. No one's complaining about that. People that dislike Raef dislike him because he couldn't defend ME in the post, much less an NBA post player.

I understand Stepania gets good rebounds per minutes but is this against front line guys? NO. Is it against Shaq and Duncan and Garnett in the West. Spares in the east.

Actually, let's look at how he performed against a few Western powers:

vs. LA: 8.5 ppg, 7.0 rpg in 24 mpg
vs. Sacto: 8.0 ppg, 9.0 rpg in 20.5 mpg
vs. SA: 4.0 ppg, 10.5 rpg in 21.5 mpg
vs. Dallas: 5.0 ppg, 8.0 rpg in 19.0 mpg

It looks to me like he did just fine against the Top 4 in the West. Try again.

You are overselling this guy big time.

No, I'm just refusing to let you undersell him. I'm not proclaiming him the savior. However, he can definitely come in and provide some help -- so why not sign him? I'm not talking about offering him a 6 or 7 year deal, but why would a 2 year deal hurt?

It is assumed here that if Raef is not here he has been traded for someone who can help in the middle and the 7'1" overrated Stepania on this board will not be needed.

Assumed by you. I'm in favor of acquiring Stepania whether or not Raef is moved. Surely you're not saying that the Mavs don't have room for both guys on the roster, are you?

Please remember if you are paying this guy essentially EIGHT MILLION BUCKS a year when considering tax implications that a deal to take on bad contracts to get a guy we really want ain't gonna happen.
We have enough of those already.


Why not? To get a guy we "really want" we're likely going to ship out a couple of bad contracts too. I just don't see your logic here at all.

Stop analyzing it based on luxury tax. It's not Stepania that got the Mavs into the luxury tax. In the NBA economy, 4 million/year for a decent center isn't a bad deal. If they can get him for less, fine. But I could care less about the luxury tax. That's Cuban's problem, and he used to claim that he was more than willing to pay it.

Does Stepania get you to the NBA Finals? HELL NO!!! So what's the point? If you can answer that question I really don't see how you can justify the signing. P.S. You can't.

Terrible logic. If we're going to wait to make a move until we are pretty sure it gets us to the NBA Finals, we're going to be waiting quite a while.


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Old 08-04-2003, 10:11 PM   #13
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Default Vladimir Stepania

As championed by Rhylan, it is patently unfair to say it costs $8M for Stepania. Stepania is not the reason we are hopelessly above the luxury tax. It is the combined total of all of the salaries. If that were the case, why is Stepania to be singled out? AJ costs $11M. Wahed costs $12M. Beloved Raef costs $14M and Finley costs $26M.

If the team insists on continuing the delusional notion that it needs to get an $8M player for $4M in salary and $4M in luxury taxes, then this team will never improve.


Exactly. Well said.


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Old 08-04-2003, 10:15 PM   #14
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Go after him if the Mavs feel the need but you must ship Bradley or Esch out of here before considering. There is no way you can have 3 centers on this team that don't bang at all. Stepania is a good name if you got lets say a guy like Dampier on the bench or ahead of him. Bradley and Esch are just too inconsistent and don't bang at all for me to be sold on Stepania.
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Old 08-04-2003, 10:15 PM   #15
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Default Vladimir Stepania

I'd sign Stepania. In fact, I started a topic on him about a week or so ago.

But my guess is we won't sign him. Mark Cuban and Nellie want to add all-star quality players without giving up jack schitt. And never mind the fact that in order to get quality you have to give up quality. And totally ignore the fact that what we are missing is a quality role player or two and not all-stars.

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Old 08-04-2003, 10:47 PM   #16
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Sorry I have to say Stepania is the 8 million dollar man because that is what it costs to sign him. To add him it costs that much. To not add him costs nothing. You give up that slot you lose flexibility at the trade deadline and you lose the ability to add even more salary. Cuban has balked at adding freakin' Tyrone Hill because he didn't want to pay the tax. He is willing to pay but for a player that makes the ultimate difference. A championship. I think that is really the only question I asked from you. Does his addition get us to championship level. I still say no and anyone who says yes is a damn fool. The desire to add a player or make a foolish trade is short sighted. Patience my man. Patience. February is just around the corner. A better deal is to be had there if nothing can be worked out in the off season. Hey, the guy can definitely help. But the championship is what it is all about. His signing would definitely take the Mavs out of the running for trades later this season. A trade that may make the difference. This ain't the difference we need. Hell, Miami isn't willing to offer him a big contract. Why? They have cap space. Oh wait they want to land a player that can help them get better. Well so do we. I think.
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Old 08-04-2003, 10:52 PM   #17
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KG, when your on, your on.
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Old 08-04-2003, 11:03 PM   #18
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Sign him. The Mavs could use the toughness up front. If he turns out to be another Esch then he can ride the pine for the two years. For a two year contract it is too good to pass up.
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Old 08-04-2003, 11:14 PM   #19
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Default Vladimir Stepania

KG is ON? He is so far off it is not even comical. Unfortunately Mr Cuban does not get to play by Rhylan's rules. I'm not aware of the NBA rule where you can waive a player that you didn't want and not have it count against your salary cap. Except for a major injury of course. Bringing him in does cost the Mavericks 8 million bucks, real money. It is a factor when considering players. Your current situation effects future moves. You guys live in a fantasyland. Regardless of the player it costs Mr Cuban an extra 8 million dollars. To not add him counts nothing. Put whomever you wish in the 8 million slot but would you pay Avery Johnson 8 million dollars to have Stepania on your team? Hell no.
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Old 08-04-2003, 11:53 PM   #20
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Mike why would the signing of Stepania effect an in season trade? You don't think we would give up players to get players? Maybe we trade the same amount of players we get. I think the Mavs need role players like Vlad. I hate Raefs contract but I'm not saying we should trade him when we get Vlad. I actually don't mind the thought of Raef playing about 20 min at PF and maybe 5-8 at C a night. Then you plug Brad and Vlad in the C position the rest of the night. IMO that would be pretty formidable considering we already have three All-Stars Fin, Dirk, Nash and one really good bench player NVE. I say we get some good depth and people who will do the little things (Rebounding) for the Mavs.
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Old 08-05-2003, 12:47 AM   #21
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Default Vladimir Stepania

The reason signing someone to a contract with the MLE will effect trades at the break is due to dollars. We will most certainly have to take on more bad contracts in an effort to get better. This means longer term for higher dollars. Avery Johnson is certain to go in a trade and he is eaten up by a bad contract that we must keep in future years. It all adds up to flexibility. The more players you sign and the higher over the cap you go the less likely a deal can be done. I'm not he couldn't help us but what I am saying he is not worth the money and the loss in flexibility. I know those in the general public wish we would have signed Keon Clark last year. Sacramento wants to drop him like a bad habit. Next year we will not have this slot if someone better comes along if we sign Stepania. I have faith Mr Cuban has all the angles covered. If nothing else I have learned to spell Stepania thru this exercise.
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Old 08-05-2003, 12:56 AM   #22
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Someone will come along next year? I guess that's just like last year or even this year. Right? I'm sick of hearing about next year. If we are looking at next year lets move some of our older players for some younger ones, if we want it this year we have to make improvements on our depth and get some quality at center. I'm not expecting Vlad to be a savior but I do think he could be pretty productive in about 20-25 minutes a game.
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Old 08-05-2003, 01:18 AM   #23
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Default RE: Vladimir Stepania

I know those in the general public wish we would have signed Keon Clark last year.

Well, I'll just thank goodness we don't have any of the members of that "general public" or Geoff Petrie making roster-aquisition decisions for our Mavs...

On the subject of Vlad and trades:

I think that Vladimir Stepania might be a pretty decent stop-gap aquistion for us, but I also tend to think that the man might not be offensively able enough to fit into a Nelson-style offense, and judging by his rejection of the Miami offer, he and his agent might have salary asperations that place the man outside of the reach of our MLE... He could be a nice player for us, but his aquistion by the Mavs just seems pretty unlikely to me...

Aside from the issue of FA Vlad, I will actually agree with the newcomer Rowlett in his assertion that any prospective trade's in the Mav's future are far more likely to happen at next season's trade deadline than at any time in the remainder of this pre-season...

Sure, the Cuban-Nelson braintrust has certainly been threatened by the menacing FA aquisitions of the Lakers, Spurs, and TWolves (A lot of folks also think that Sacramento significantly upgraded this Summer, but methinks they got fleeced in paying the price that they paid for Eastern conference utility-junk-man Brad Miller), but I don't believe that Dallas is about to make a stupid deal just for the sake of forcing some movement this off-season...

Unless something significant happens between Dallas and Atlanta (soon to be the fief of Mavs season-ticket holder and former Mavs minority owner David McDavid), I just don't see us making any significant trade moves before mid-season of next year...

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Old 08-05-2003, 01:22 AM   #24
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Default Vladimir Stepania

hey yo..i dunno bout u...but i dont want to wait till feb trade deadline..

the reason we need to act now or next season(AND HAVE TO NEXT SEASON)...is cuz u want the player to go through the motions of they nellie weirdo system to understand it....its been a season and a half and raef still dont understand it..imagine how it'd be in feb if we traded and got a guy of raefs poetentials or better..and still not fit in well in nellie's system..u'll have a nother 1st-2nd round early exit topss...

u need to add someone do it b4 the season starts..so that way when playoff comes around the guy knows his way..the coach knows his player and the team knows how to react...

although im not much fan of the coach...nellie is a pussy who needs to make his team better now...

and no i too dont want to say "next season KG"..after last years Lewis and this years Zo....

if we do dat..next year comes around and KG decides..ehy I love minnie im gonna stay....or i feel miami or anyother tom dick or harry has a good chance at a championship..
then cubs will come out and say...the agent said it was a done deal...KG went the other way....

although a KG-Dirk combo is deadly..still dont wanna wait 4 it..im a result guy..every team i've followed got a championshi...i just started likin the mavs the past 2 yrs..and we've progressed so much...dirk is now my fav player..and i dont want to see us regress..not after the WCF...now i say we need to go forward...though realistically we wont...we need to...and if it means to say goodbye to one our 4 best..then so be it..just as long as we're gettin same quality all-stars in return.........
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Old 08-05-2003, 06:57 AM   #25
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Evilmav2, of all the players the Mavs wouldn't want, I would imagine that Keon Clark is not on that list...at least he has tangible athleticism around the basket and isn't prone to picking up three fouls in the first quarter. Not to mention the fact that, despite the efforts of the Mavs to acquire yet another big white stiff (Brad Miller), Geoff Petrie landed him for the Kings instead this offseason...who would you rather have on your team for 7 years and around $70 million...Miller or Raef? Yeah, I'd rather have Miller, too.

Still, the Mavs have plenty of options to pick up a guy for much less money that can be a serviceable banger in the paint. Stepania might be that guy...he has certainly proven that he can throw his weight around, albeit in the same conference where Brad Miller made a name for himself. If I were a diehard Mavs' fan, I'd rather see Dampier or Dale Davis, but those guys cannot just up and walk away from their teams like Stepania.

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Old 08-05-2003, 08:24 AM   #26
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Default RE: Vladimir Stepania

I'd rather have Raef. He's much more athletic. Much more skilled. His upside is much higher.

Miller is a utility man - a lumbering bruising thug. Is he any better than Stepania? Probably not. The numbers say Step is a better rebounder. He's definitely got more range on his shot. Step is taller. He's more skilled. I'm not saying that Step is anything more than a backup center in the West, but that's about all I can say for Miller, too. Raef? I think he has the potential to be a very nice player in this league. We can likely get Step for around $8 mil for two years. Much closer to what he's worth than the ridiculous contract given to Miller.
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Old 08-05-2003, 08:48 AM   #27
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Apologies in advance for rambling.

A 2 year deal at $4M for Stepania is not particularly stupid. It is not reckless. It is not outrageous. It's real impact on this team's salary cap situation is negligible.

The real problem is that Mark has it in his head that he has to get some crazy-ass bargain. I keep going back to Horry and Pippen, two player I didn't even want. But apparently the good ol' Mavs had interest. Each guy signed for an amount equivalent to the MLE. Cuban offered each the Million Dollar exception of $1.5M for 2 years. Now Horry is the better example for my point. Horry signed a 2-year deal with the second being the team's option. SA will not exercise the option. Basically, SA signed Horry for a 1 year deal. The Mavs could have offered the same money, but didn't even try. A 1 year deal has no impact on the future of this club.

At first Cuban tried to use the $4.9M exception to get Malone or Mourning; two players worth more than $4.9M (if Mourning were healthy and if Malone weren't set on getting a ring), but seemed prepared to take that amount. Cuban was right with those two, but ultimately came up empty handed.

Since then, Cuban really has been dicking around. He has offered the MLE to players only a moron would think they might accept-Miller, Nasty, for example. I even toss Kandi on there, though his agent apparently coerced him into taking the MLE to play with his college roommate. Maybe Cuban was trying to initiate a sign and trade or maybe he wasn't.

Or he has offered the small exception to players that were being offered more elsewhere.

We have also, apparently, been offering our junk to other teams for their starters.

Now, none of this is a real problem, except that the Mavs have real deficiencies. Remember that throughout the season, just about everybody on this board agreed that the Mavs needed to: get a real starting small forward; improve low post scoring; add depth to the bench; find a real backup shooting guard; overall improve the defense. Well, hey, I think we decided that Raja can back up Finley. The only other issue addressed is drafting Josh Howard. Howard is not the answer despite the claims of the Mavs PR machine. If Howard puts up Najera-esque numbers, he'll be a smashing success; at the same time, he'll also be of very little help for a "contending team"(particularly when it means that he won't contribute much beyond the loss of production of either Walt or Grif).

So we have all these issues to be addressed, and we have done nothing to address them.

Imagine going to an auction. The auctioneer announces that the bidding will start at $10M. If a guy jumps up and screams "$3M!!!", that guy will look like a fool. Now further imagine, that after the initial offer of $10M, the bidding goes up to $15M, and the same guy is jumping up and down screaming "$5M!!!".

In essence, this is what Cuban is doing.

Now, I have a question. Is that even trying? Skin of "Ben and Skin" was on the Ticket last week and he said that at least the effort was there. Well, is it really? Are you really trying to make a trade when you are only willing to part with TAW, AJ, Esch or Bradley? Are you actually trying to acquire talent when you offer a guy that made the allstar team in 2003 less than he made the year before (Brad Miller)? Are you trying to acquire talent when you offer a guy 1/3 what another team offers when you can offer the same amount (pippen)? Are you trying to acquire talent when you offer a guy less money over 2 years what another team offers for just one year (Horry)? The Mavs have done or are doing all these things. Is that "effort"?
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Old 08-05-2003, 09:19 AM   #28
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Default Vladimir Stepania

mikeinrowlett - Before I respond to your post, I just wanted to politely ask that you do everyone a favor and insert a couple of paragraph breaks here and there in your posts. One huge paragraph makes it very difficult to read.

Sorry I have to say Stepania is the 8 million dollar man because that is what it costs to sign him. To add him it costs that much. To not add him costs nothing.

I guess the posts above didn't explain it clearly enough. If the Mavericks were sufficiently under the cap, signing Stepania wouldn't cost them any luxury tax. The Mavs, however, have been above the cap for quite a while now. WAY above the cap. They pay luxury tax (and a lot of it) whether or not Stepania comes here. The only reason Stepania costs them any luxury tax at all is because they are already above the cap.

And as Dooby aptly pointed out, if the Mavs are going to go around thinking they have to get an 8 million dollar player for 4 million, they're never going to improve. It's not the player's fault that the Mavs are over the cap, and if the Mavs want to improve they're going to have to pay reasonably close to market value to get players.

In other words, if you wait and don't sign Stepania, what are you waiting for? ANY FA you sign is going to cause you to pay more luxury tax. And if you're expecting to just wait around and get somebody for 50 cents on the dollar, well, that's just moronic.

You give up that slot you lose flexibility at the trade deadline and you lose the ability to add even more salary.

What slot are you talking about? What flexibility are you talking about? I've asked you to explain this before, and you have yet to do it.

Cuban has balked at adding freakin' Tyrone Hill because he didn't want to pay the tax.

He balked at adding Tyrone Hill because he sucks. Stepania's quite a bit younger and is a legit center who is a great rebounder and a banger inside.

Let me pose it to you this way: If Stepania's not good enough to spend money on, who is? And I don't want an answer like, "The guy that will get us a championship." Give me a name. Or names.

He is willing to pay but for a player that makes the ultimate difference. A championship. I think that is really the only question I asked from you. Does his addition get us to championship level. I still say no and anyone who says yes is a damn fool.

As I told you in my last post, this is terrible logic. If you think there's one guy out there that you can add for the MLE that's going to get you a title, you're crazy. Also, who ever said that you shouldn't add a player unless you know he's going to get you a title? Certainly not any GM in the NBA. There are guys you can add that would improve your team. It's about improving, and addressing deficiencies.

The desire to add a player or make a foolish trade is short sighted.

The desire to add a player is short sighted? Huh? Why? If the guy can help the team, he can help the team. When do you deem it okay to add a player, and who should we add?

Who said anything about a foolish trade? Are you honestly saying LaFrentz/AJ for Grant (the only trade I've discussed in this thread) would be foolish?

Patience my man. Patience. February is just around the corner. A better deal is to be had there if nothing can be worked out in the off season.

You have absolutely no basis for this statement.

Hey, the guy can definitely help.

So you admit it? Thanks. That's all I needed to hear.

But the championship is what it is all about. His signing would definitely take the Mavs out of the running for trades later this season. A trade that may make the difference. This ain't the difference we need. Hell, Miami isn't willing to offer him a big contract. Why? They have cap space. Oh wait they want to land a player that can help them get better. Well so do we. I think.

Don't contradict yourself. You just said he can definitely help. Now you say he wouldn't make Miami better? Huh?

As for your statement that a Stepania signing takes the Mavs out of running for trades, I'll refer to my question above: How?

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Old 08-05-2003, 09:35 AM   #29
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Bringing him in does cost the Mavericks 8 million bucks, real money. It is a factor when considering players. Your current situation effects future moves. You guys live in a fantasyland. Regardless of the player it costs Mr Cuban an extra 8 million dollars.

Honestly, mike, I don't care if it costs "Mr. Cuban" an extra 8 million dollars. Mark Cuban used to tell me (the fan) that money was no object and that he wouldn't let the luxury tax get in the way of acquiring better players. He's now reversed his stance.

The Mavericks are in "salary cap hell" (as Randy Galloway might put it) for the foreseeable future. To get better, they have to do one of the following:

1) make a trade
2) draft a player
3) sign a FA

If they make a trade, they can try to dump long-term contracts in the process, but it's difficult to do. Especially when you're also trying to get something for nothing in the same trade.

If they draft a player, it doesn't significantly impact the cap, but in the spot the Mavs are drafting, it also doesn't significantly impact the team.

If they sign a FA, they have to pay more tax. Bottom line. I don't care who the FA is.

So what's the point? Simple. If you're going to acquire a free agent, you're going to have to pay market value. You can't go around saying, "Michael Redd isn't worth 8-9 million dollars. We're not going to sign him. Vladimir Stepania isn't worth 7-8 million dollars. We're not going to sign him either." What player available for a 3-4.5 million salary is worth twice that? Answer: NOBODY.

So if we're going to go into cost-cutting mode and not acquire any new players, fine. But if that was going to be the case, then they shouldn't have told us a completely different story in June. They should have just come out and said the following:

"We're not going to sign any free agents unless we can get an absolute steal. We don't want to pay the luxury tax. Our first goal is not to improve -- it's to save money. Also, we're not going to make any trades unless we can give away guys off the end of the bench and acquire a starting caliber player in return. We don't want to trade any player that logged more than 20 minutes per game last season. By the way, did we mention that Raef has re-dedicated himself?" -- Mavericks Management

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Old 08-05-2003, 09:48 AM   #30
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Default Vladimir Stepania

The real problem is that Mark has it in his head that he has to get some crazy-ass bargain.

The truth.

Now, none of this is a real problem, except that the Mavs have real deficiencies. Remember that throughout the season, just about everybody on this board agreed that the Mavs needed to: get a real starting small forward; improve low post scoring; add depth to the bench; find a real backup shooting guard; overall improve the defense. Well, hey, I think we decided that Raja can back up Finley. The only other issue addressed is drafting Josh Howard. Howard is not the answer despite the claims of the Mavs PR machine. If Howard puts up Najera-esque numbers, he'll be a smashing success; at the same time, he'll also be of very little help for a "contending team"(particularly when it means that he won't contribute much beyond the loss of production of either Walt or Grif).

So we have all these issues to be addressed, and we have done nothing to address them.


This gets lost in the mix a lot of times. The Mavs had needs to address, and they haven't done it.

Imagine going to an auction. The auctioneer announces that the bidding will start at $10M. If a guy jumps up and screams "$3M!!!", that guy will look like a fool. Now further imagine, that after the initial offer of $10M, the bidding goes up to $15M, and the same guy is jumping up and down screaming "$5M!!!".

In essence, this is what Cuban is doing.


Preach on.

Now, I have a question. Is that even trying? Skin of "Ben and Skin" was on the Ticket last week and he said that at least the effort was there. Well, is it really? Are you really trying to make a trade when you are only willing to part with TAW, AJ, Esch or Bradley? Are you actually trying to acquire talent when you offer a guy that made the allstar team in 2003 less than he made the year before (Brad Miller)? Are you trying to acquire talent when you offer a guy 1/3 what another team offers when you can offer the same amount (pippen)? Are you trying to acquire talent when you offer a guy less money over 2 years what another team offers for just one year (Horry)? The Mavs have done or are doing all these things. Is that "effort"?

An interesting point. I have to say no, it's not. If I go into a car dealership and offer them $15,000.00 for a new Ford Expedition, I shouldn't be shocked when they tell me that they can't help me. Same concept here. You'll never get something for nothing in the NBA. No matter how much "effort" you put into it.

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Old 08-05-2003, 12:34 PM   #31
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Quote:
At first Cuban tried to use the $4.9M exception to get Malone or Mourning; two players worth more than $4.9M (if Mourning were healthy and if Malone weren't set on getting a ring), but seemed prepared to take that amount. Cuban was right with those two, but ultimately came up empty handed.
Unfortunately, no.

This Summer, we recruited Mourning, snubbed Malone, and thus flushed our best chance of significantly improving our team without resorting to trades languidly down the toilet...

Prior to the start of free-agency, Malone clearly indicated to the Deseret news and to Eddie Sefko of the DMN that Dallas was at the top of a very short list of his favored free-agency locations, but following Cuban's widely publicized Mourning visit at midnight of June 30, Malone responded to this affront like a spurned lover- ripping unnamed teams who looked at him as a "10th option" in the press and jumping at the Lakers $1.5 million offer...

Any claims that Malone joining the Lakers was inevitable, are foolishness and fallacy. The terrible truth is that our Dallas Mavericks probably could have signed the hall of fame power forward, if we had responded to his messages in the press by making it clear to the man that he was our first, and best option in FA. Instead, our front office lusted after the paired pipe-dreams of aquiring a lost, and never to return, 1998-form Mourning, and a executing a fantasy sign-and-trade for Jason Kidd...

Malone could have been a Mav, but our pursuit of the fickle and ruined kidney's of Alonzo Mourning not only scuttled that hope, but probably determined what city will be hosting an NBA championship parade next July...
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Old 08-05-2003, 12:40 PM   #32
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Default Vladimir Stepania

If Cuban is willing to take on Grant's huge-ass salary, why does signing Step to a 2 year, $8M contract scare him?

While I'd like to see us get Grant, there are a few things that scare me:

1) Age. He'll be 32 when the playoffs roll around. Still very productive, but how long before the stats start to decline? Particularly if he's playing nightly in the more rugged West.

2) Size. He's definitely undersized for what the Mavs will want him to do, especially if we don't add any other front line help.

3) Cost. As mentioned above, he's got a Finley-type contract, with 3 years to go. If we get him and his production drops from his Miami numbers, do we have another salary albatross around our necks?

Stepania is five years younger than Grant, he is definitely a center (not undersized), and if you can get him for two years, that's not a long term commitment. Sure he doesn't put up Grant's numbers, but we can get him without giving up NVE or Raef or whomever. I think Cuban has a hard time giving Step $4M a year deal because he thought he had Mourning for $4.9M. Cubes need to get over that and get us some front line help. If you look at Step's numbers and what the other sorry-ass centers around the league are commanding in salary, I don't think $4M is too out of line. My only concern: If Step is as underrated as we all think, how come Miami doesn't appear very interested? After all, they need to fill Mourning's void--apparently they are more interested in Samaki Walker?? Or are they saving their pennies for the offer sheet to Odom?

My gut feeling is, let's get Step before one of our rivals does. He'll add some depth, we can see how he performs for the 1st half of the year. If it doesn't work, let's look at a deadline deal. I'm just not sure the Grant thing makes sense considering what we'd have to give up and what we'd be inheriting in salary. [img]i/expressions/face-icon-small-confused.gif[/img]
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Old 08-05-2003, 01:55 PM   #33
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Excellent post, NewMexiMav.

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Old 08-05-2003, 02:18 PM   #34
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Default Vladimir Stepania

I don't understand the infatuation of Step on this board. Granted I haven't seen him play the last few years, but lets look at the facts.

He has been shunned by at least 3 teams (Seattle, NJ and NY I believe). When he was in NJ, Esch was on that team. Esch played a ton more minutes then the great mr. Step.

Last year he played on a heat team with no depth and no center. He managed 20 minutes on that same centerless team who was also a very bad team.

This offseason big guys are getting overpaid by everyone. The Heat still don't have a center and have 12 million in cap room. Riley who has seen this 7'1 GREAT rebounder play for two years but has only offered him the minimum for 1 year to come back. Plus no other of the teams in the league who all could use a center or a GREAT rebounder has offered this kid a multi year deal.

For God's sake, sign him to a small deal but I don't see the infactuation for this kid. Were these the same people saying the sky was falling when Booth and Wang left? Maybe he is slipping through the cracks and is a player who is improving, although I think that at best he is a 8-9 man on a team. We already have Bradley for that.
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Old 08-05-2003, 02:41 PM   #35
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Default Vladimir Stepania

KGveteran I'll try to remember the paragraph thing. I think were you and I get crossed up is your assumption that the MLE must be spent. I have never suggested that it need be so. In fact I wish to err on the side of caution regarding this matter. It is irrelevant if we are over the cap at this time. I understand that the MLE is afforded to us due to the fact that we are over the cap and that this is the only reason we have it.

Just one more point regarding contradicting myself. Stepania would not be signed by Miami to be the final piece to a championship puzzle. Nor would he be here. I think he could help but towards the ulitimate goal he is a non factor.

Who is the player that will get us to the championship. He comes in a trade, not a MLE signing. I think the Mavericks themselves admitted as much. You have to deal in speculation when it comes to the future because nothing is certain. Declaring that Stepania is worthy of signing in and of itself is speculation. NO different than me speculating that Raef wiill play in the post or that a better deal will come along.

I'm sure there was some other stuff but I can't remember it right now.
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Old 08-05-2003, 02:44 PM   #36
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Default Vladimir Stepania

Chicago JK - I don't think anyone's overly infatuated with the guy. The simple fact is, in today's market, a 2 year, $8 million deal isn't that bad. Hell, Elden Campbell got that type of contract. Stepania's a better deal than he is.

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Old 08-05-2003, 02:53 PM   #37
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Default Vladimir Stepania

imo steph would fit very well with our other international players. he will be very happy to play with other fellas that come from foreign countries just like himself and another thing is that he would compete for a title instead of competing for a playoff spot in the east that will definitely motivate him too.
and dont forget that it is also like he would just start to play for his next contract because 2 years arent that long and he knows that the west is tougher than the east.
for me getting dampier and stepahnia while keeping raef and bradley and moving esch wouldn t be the worst offseason .
pg: nash van exel and the summer league kid
sg:finley bell
sf: dirk howard
pf: raef najera
c: dampier stephania,bradley
when we play our zone we could easily play bradley stephania and dirk together up front and outreboundnearly any other team.
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Old 08-05-2003, 02:55 PM   #38
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Default Vladimir Stepania

I think were you and I get crossed up is your assumption that the MLE must be spent.

When you have a) have recognized deficiencies, and b) are hopelessly over the salary cap, I think you DO have to use the MLE if you want to get better. And you might have to gamble with the MLE. I'm not suggesting they offer him the entire MLE. But they should be willing to spend quite a bit more than $1.5m for a backup center that can get 7 reb/game in 20 minutes and can bang inside.

I have never suggested that it need be so.

But Donnie Nelson has.

In fact I wish to err on the side of caution regarding this matter. It is irrelevant if we are over the cap at this time. I understand that the MLE is afforded to us due to the fact that we are over the cap and that this is the only reason we have it.

I don't see what we really have to lose, other than Cuban's money. And as I've stated before, I don't care about his money.

Just one more point regarding contradicting myself. Stepania would not be signed by Miami to be the final piece to a championship puzzle. Nor would he be here. I think he could help but towards the ulitimate goal he is a non factor.

One of their stated needs is bulk inside and rebounding inside. He can help substantially in those areas. If nothing else, he adds depth to our front line. I don't see a downside.

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Old 08-05-2003, 02:56 PM   #39
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Default Vladimir Stepania

mikeinrowlett, there is no single player that will ever be made available that will win this team a championship.

This team still doesn't have a starting small forward; still lacks low post scoring; still needs depth; still needs improved defense. First, no one guy can fill all those needs. Second, guys like that are not generally made available via trade or free agency.

This team is not 1 player away. Even so, across all of sports, most teams that think they are one player away, usually find out they need more than that.
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Old 08-05-2003, 03:15 PM   #40
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Default Vladimir Stepania

I ask myself when considering Stepania....what if Sacramento or Minnesota or Lakers signed him. I'd think to myself....yeah and...so. I'm not sure Step is "the bulk" we are looking for. I think dooby if I got that right has made my point for me. No one player is going to make a difference. So why sign this one?

On a lighter note, I notice KGveteran give Kudos to certain posts. Are these due to the fact that they are thought provoking or due to the fact that they agree with you [img]i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif[/img]
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