The Dallas Mavericks announced that they have signed three free agents to their training camp roster. Joining the team will be Josh Akognon, Tu Holloway and D.J. Mbenga. Terms of the deals are not disclosed.
Holloway played four years for Xavier where he averaged 13.7 points, 4.1 assists and 1.2 steals a game to go along with Atlantic 10 Player of the Year and Third Team All-America honors from the associated press. He was not drafted during this past summer’s draft and even though he was put on the Toronto Raptors for the Summer League he did not play a single minute.
The California native, Akognon, has never played in the NBA despite being 26 years old. During his college days he played for Washington State and transferred to California State where he averaged 23.9 points a game during his junior year and was named Big West Conference Player of the Year. He has played for the Estonian League, Baltic League and for the DongGuan Leopards for the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA). During his two years in the CBA he averaged over 28 points a game.
As for Mbenga the Mavericks are very familiar with the 31 year old from Zaire. He began his NBA career with the Dallas Mavericks in 2004 where he spent three years there before being waived by them. He later signed with the Golden State Warriors and spent only a few months with the team when he was also waived by them. In that same month he was released he signed a 10 day contract with the Los Angeles Lakers which he eventually stayed until 2010. He spent the 2010-11 season with the New Orleans Hornets. Mbenga is a two time NBA Champion which he got when he was with the Lakers.
Out of the three guys signed by the Mavs for their training camp, Mbenga is the most likely person to earn a spot with the Dallas Mavericks; however, with the Mavs roster already filled up with 15 players he will probably spend his time with their D-League team, Texas Legends. President of Basketball Operations, Donnie Nelson, mentioned that Mbenga will have a chance to prove that he deserves to be part of the Mavericks roster. As a guy who is usually a crowd favorite he is most likely not to see many minutes from this team as Mbenga is the guy that teams use to have an extra foul to use rather than their main guys getting a foul. As for Holloway and Akognon they are most likely on here to be part of the Mavs practice squad and if they do stay with the team they too will be part of the Legends instead of the Mavs roster.