Posted: 9:34 p.m. Tuesday, July 30, 2013
By Kirk Henderson
"Mekel told me that he was put in a room with General Manager Donnie Nelson and all the coaches and they told him that as a rookie he would have a better chance of playing more minutes at the start of the season if he takes part in the preliminary training camp as well as the final camp," Shivek said.
I recommend going to read the whole thing. On the one hand, the coach's frustration is totally understandable. You want your best players available for an important tournament. Pair that with a country that takes nationalism seriously, and Mekel's been put in a tough spot.
But I've always seen Cuban's point of view; when a team invests time and money into a player, letting that player operate outside of your team's control is risky business. I can't recall any injury that's happened to a marquis player, but once it happens, there will be a major backlash. The Mavericks may have put Mekel in an unfortunate circumstance, but that's the business side of playing in the best league on the planet.
With Shane Larkin hurt, Mekel has a real chance to earn minutes in the back court rotation. If you watched Summer League at all, you saw that Mekel understands basketball, which was a trait sorely lacking in last year's point guards.