For years forward Shawn Marion has been an integral part of the Dallas Mavericks lineup. Now 34 and in his 13th season, it may be time for the franchise and Marion to part ways.
Marion has been with the Mavericks since 2009 and used his trademark athleticism and versatility to play both forward positions effectively for Dallas. Marion ran the floor well, finished on the break and in traffic, was a plus defender and even knocked down the occasional open jump shot.
But over the last two seasons Marion has been more of an afterthought than an impact. Marion averaged over 10.6 points last year, his lowest total since his rookie season. This year Marion hasn’t been much better; averaging just 119 points while his minutes have slipped to less than 30 a game.
This isn’t to say that Marion doesn’t have any value left, because he does. He’s still averaging over seven rebounds a game — 7.9 — and converts .513 of his shot attempts. He’s still the type of player than can get points here and there without needing a single play called for him, which is rare for a NBA wing.
The only issue is that Marion’s production isn’t worth what he contributes on a nightly basis. Marion’s contract has a early termination option for the 2013-2014 season and with him being owed $9.3 million, the best move for the team would be to exercise that option and cut Marion loose.
Marion has been one of the most underrated players in the league for over a decade, but his days in Dallas appear to be coming to an end. Some team could definitely use Marion’s services next season, but it most likely won’t be the Mavericks.