Gators in the NBA: Mavs GM interested in long-term health of Finney-Smith

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Dallas Mavericks forward Dorian Finney-Smith (10) and former-Cavaliers guard Dwyane Wade (9) chase the ball during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Dallas last November. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

Mavericks general manager Donnie Nelson lumped Dorian Finney-Smith’s name in with a group of young Mavs, including Seth Curry and Nerlens Noel that he has high hopes for.
“We like them all. We see these as young players with long NBA careers and hopefully they’ll be Mavericks,” Nelson said while speaking to reporters at the Mavs practice facility last Thursday after the trade deadline had passed.
Nelson added he hopes the second-year player can return at some point this season and similarly to Seth Curry, they are going the more conservative, natural path to getting healthy rather than surgery.
If Finney-Smith does return, he’d likely have to play some games for G-League affiliate Texas Legends due to his prolonged absence from game action due to knee tendonitis.
Around the NBA, the trade deadline came and went last Thursday without any former Gators being moved, and maybe most notably Knicks center Joakim Noah stayed put in New York. Minnesota and Oklahoma City emerged as possible landing spots for Noah if he and the Knicks are able to reach a buyout agreement at some point, but reports suggest Noah isn’t interested in a buyout that could get him out of New York and playing for one of two former coaches in Billy Donovan or Tom Thibodeau.
Wizards guard Bradley Beal struggled with just seven points on 23 percent shooting to go along with six assists in his latest outing against the Bulls on Saturday. The Wizards still managed to come out on top against Chicago, despite Beal missing all seven of his 3-point attempts.
Celtics center Al Horford also struggled this week after hitting the game-winning shot last week against Portland. Horford put up a season-low two points in Boston’s 111-91 loss to Toronto on February 6 and had 12 points against Washington in Big Al’s highest point total of the week. Horford also went all week without recording a single double-double.
Magic forward Marreese Speights played pretty well off the bench this week scoring seven points in seven minutes in a win over Cleveland and scoring 14 points in a win over Atlanta.
Also providing a spark for his team off the bench was Lakers forward Corey Brewer whose best game featured six points, three assists and two rebounds in a 106-81 thrashing of Oklahoma City on Thursday.
There was one trade made that did affect one former Gator as Heat forward Udonis Haslem was reunited with old friend Dwyane Wade after Wade was traded from Cleveland back to Miami on February 8 for a second-round draft pick. Haslem is one of only 11 players ever to spend an entire 15-year NBA career with one team. Dirk Nowitzki in Dallas, and Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili in San Antonio are the others still in the NBA. Here is Haslem’s reaction to the Wade trade:

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


Boston Celtics
Al Horford (C)
Dallas Mavericks
Dorian Finney-Smith (F)
Los Angeles Lakers
Corey Brewer (F)
Memphis Grizzlies
Chandler Parsons (F)
Miami Heat
Udonis Haslem (F)
New York Knicks
Joakim Noah (C)
Orlando Magic
Marreese Speights (F)
Washington Wizards
Bradley Beal (G)
Devin Robinson (F)


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