The Mavs announced today that they’re requesting waivers on Jake Voskuhl, making Shawne Williams a Mav for a bit longer.
If I was the type of person to decipher a moral from this story, I wouldn’t be pleased. Shawne Williams is clearly out of the team’s favor, for something of the unspeakable variety. Voskuhl, on the other hand, came as training camp addition, and reportedly worked hard and played reasonably well during his short time with the team (his defensive efficiency was good for third on the team for the preseason). No, he’s not a great player or even a very good one, but at this point the Mavs just need someone to sop up minutes in the middle. Voskuhl is a center, he’s a hard worker, and he’s not Shawne Williams. In theory, that should be that.
But alas, this brief tale of motor and team need was trumped by the almighty motivator: money, money, money. Williams is owed $2.4 million guaranteed, while Voskuhl’s contract is unguaranteed and can easily be swept under the rug. Forget that Williams won’t see the bench or the practice facility, much less the court. Footing the bill (twice, if you consider a waived Williams would still bear luxury tax ramifications) just doesn’t make financial sense for the team when Williams’ expiring contract could play a role in a trade later this season.
On the court and on the depth chart, this move makes no sense. But with few teams looking to take on the walking headache that is Shawne Williams at this point, the Mavs had few other options.