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Heat's P.J. Tucker Hits Free Agency; Can Mavs Sign for Wing Depth Need?

P.J. Tucker is a player who has proven he has what it takes to be on a contender.

Every year, fans around the league want their teams to make a big splash in the offseason. Whether it be through the draft, trades or signing a big free agent, fans want to see movement that will take their team to the next level.

One of the glaring needs from the Dallas Mavericks' playoff run this season was a low-post presence. The Mavericks wasted no time meeting that need by going out and acquiring the athletic Houston Rockets big man, Christian Wood. However, if the Mavs wanted to add a versatile wing into the mix that can also play down low in small-ball lineups when needed, perhaps that can add veteran P.J. Tucker into the mix.

Tucker informed the Miami Heat on Monday that he's opting out of the last year of his contract, making him an unrestricted free agent. The Mavericks currently have a $6.3 million taxpayer trade exception at their disposal. It remains to be seen if they'd be able to convince Tucker to accept that offer, but according to GM Nico Harrison, he has no doubt many players around the league have seen the culture the Mavs have created and want to be a part of it.

"I really think that what players are attracted to is the culture. Who’s the coach? How does he treat the players? Are they going to let me play? I think that’s all stuff that if you watch us play,” said Harrison on the Ben and Skin Show.

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“I came here thinking that Dallas is a place that top-tier talent wants to come, and I believe that what Jason [Kidd] has created in terms of a culture, that has been the case and will continue to be the case.”

Tucker, while standing at just 6-5, has proven with his 245-pound frame that he can hold his own against some of the biggest players in the league. The Mavericks have also proven that they are interested in acquiring some more athletic wing players this offseason. His numbers will not blow anyone away, but he would still be a welcomed addition, as he would expand coach Jason Kidd's playoff rotation and take pressure off of defensive guys like Dorian Finney-Smith and Reggie Bullock.

Tucker averages 7.1 points and 5.6 rebounds per game over his career in about 29 minutes per game. With his tenacious drive and active hands, he also averages one steal per game. Tucker does not shy away from guarding any position one-through-five. He has stepped up in some of the biggest moments of his teams' playoff battles as well and risen to task.

Tucker also possesses a championship pedigree, having been a key piece of the Milwaukee Bucks run to the title in 2021. Despite being 37 years old, Tucker is still more than willing to do the "dirty" work. Whether it's as a starter or a role player off the bench, his competitive spirit remains the same.

Tucker might not be a huge splash for the Mavs if they were able to sign him, but you would still definitely see the ripples such a move.