Gortat, according to reports, has committed to sign the Mavs’ offer sheet, with Howard’s back-up apparently commanding a mid-level contract starting at $5.6 million. Smith said he had yet to receive an offer sheet from the Mavs. But he reiterated his stance that the club — which can match any offer for Gortat because he is a restricted free agent — will not pay that steep price to keep him. “Those numbers are a little rich for a back-up center, a guy playing behind my best player (Dwight Howard),” Smith said. “If it’s 5 (million), it puts you in a situation (financially) that you don’t recover from.”
It should definitely be noted that per league rules, the Mavs are not allowed to sign Gortat to an offer sheet until July 8th. Still, it’s looking more and more like the salary the Mavs have supposedly offered Gortat as well as the luxury tax ramnifications for the Magic have sufficiently dissuaded Orlando from surprising us in the coming weeks. They’re not stitching the Gortat jerseys just yet, but we’re are nearly a go.