Mavericks in heavy pursuit of Klay Thompson in NBA free agency – NBC Sports Bay Area & California

Mavericks in heavy pursuit of Klay Thompson in NBA free agency - NBC Sports Bay Area & California

With the NBA free agent market just hours away, the race to sign Klay Thompson is heating up, with three teams vying to lure him away from the Warriors.

The Los Angeles Clippers and Lakers are looking for ways to land Thompson, who will be released on the market as an unrestricted free agent at 3 p.m. PT on Sunday. Both teams benefit from Clay’s lifelong connection to the West Coast.

However, a third team is trying to drag Thompson into a new area: Dallas.

According to a league source, the Mavericks are making Thompson their top priority. The team believes that Thompson is one of the best three-point shooters in the league, and he takes advantage of the space created by playmakers Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving, who control the ball.

When asked via text message whether the Mavs were pursuing Clay as aggressively as competitors, the source, who has deep knowledge of the Western Conference, responded with a one-word message: “More aggressively.”

Dallas can’t cite Pacific Rim as a recruiting ground, but it could create a sign-and-trade package that offers more money than the Lakers or Clippers — limited to the mid-level exception of $12.9 million — could offer. .
The Mavericks, who only have Doncic and Irving on contracts worth more than $15 million, would not hesitate to strike a trade deal that would see Thompson sign a three-year deal worth more than $50 million.

Would a three-year deal with extra money be more appealing to Klay than joining the Lakers? This is the team he cheered for as a teenager and the franchise his father, Michael, won two NBA championships with and works as a color analyst on radio broadcasts.

Would a three-year deal with the Mavericks, a legitimate contender for the 2024 NBA Finals, be more important than staying on the West Coast?

It’s possible the Lakers and Clippers could create a salary slot without making a trade.

This is where the Warriors come in. In a sign-and-trade scenario that guarantees Thompson a bigger payday, they must decide whether any of Dallas’ available players are attractive. Maxi Clipper ($11 million)? Maybe not. The most likely way for Golden State is to field at least one other team.

There’s no doubt that in this situation the Warriors would rather see Thompson with the Mavericks, if only because they won’t leave him empty-handed.

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