|21st September, 2009||NBA||Signed an unguaranteed one year minimum salary contract with Utah.|
|10th July, 2010||NBA||Signed a five year, $32,526,600 offer sheet with Portland.|
|17th July, 2010||NBA||Utah declines to match Portland's offer sheet.|
|9th July, 2015||NBA||Signed a four year, $70,060,028 contract with Dallas. Included player option for 2018/19.|
|30th April, 2018||NBA||Exercised 2018/19 player option.|
|31st January, 2019||NBA||Traded by Dallas, along with DeAndre Jordan, Dennis Smith Jr, a 2021 first round pick and a 2023 first round pick, to New York in exchange for Kristaps Porzingis, Courtney Lee, Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr.|
|7th February, 2019||NBA||Waived by New York.|
|10th February, 2019||NBA||Signed a guaranteed minimum salary contract for the remainder of the season with Indiana.|
|2005 - 2009||Marquette (NCAA)|
|July 2009||Sacramento Kings (Summer League)|
|July 2009||Utah Jazz (Summer League)|
|September 2009 - June 2010||Utah Jazz (NBA)|
|July 2010 - June 2015||Portland Trail Blazers (NBA)|
|July 2015 - January 2019||Dallas Mavericks (NBA)|
|January 2019 - February 2019||New York Knicks (NBA)|
|February 2019 - present||Indiana Pacers (NBA)|
September 12, 2018
Considering they traded their 2019 first-round draft pick to the Atlanta Hawks as a part of the move up to get Luka Doncic, and thus have no real incentive to win next season (unless they are accidentally poor or heavily injury riddled and thus need to tank again to fit within the top five protection), Dallas will not be pawning players off for the sake of it. It is in their best interests to provide a culture of stability and veteran assistance, both on and off the court, to aid the first stages of Doncic and Dennis Smith. And both Matthews and Barea could be that.
That said, they also have to reconcile the reality of where the rest of the roster is. Dallas lacks for core talents beyond them two and much youth of note, and have spent a lot of money to not get far in recent seasons. Should a reasonable opportunity to save money and gain a roster spot avail itself with these two, then, a buyout is foreseeable. It is not usual Dallas MO, but then, nor was the Doncic trade.
June 29, 2018
SG – 6’5, 220lbs - 31 years old - 9 years of experience
Now into his thirties and the back end of his career, Matthews has now put up pretty much the same season three years in a row. In 2000+ minutes, he will cast up the threes off of not much movement, hit quite a lot of them, very very rarely get to the rim, never dunk, and defend adequately if not spectacularly.
This obviously was not the role he was brought in for three years ago. Expectations were a bit higher than that. But it is one Matthews has made for himself after the Achilles injury robbed him of upside beyond that, and one he has taken to well. A glue guy who competes, there are quite a few things that the unexplosive and limited Matthews does not do on the court compared to his shooting guard peers, but at least he sticks with it and makes few mistakes.
Going forward, if used right, the contract that has hitherto been a burden now could become an asset. It is after all expiring, and, crucially, it is expiring in the summer of 2019. The egregious 2016 league-wide free agency overspend combined with a stagnating salary cap make for a large clump of big ugly salaries that do not expire until 2020, ones that teams could use some help being free of, with assets as incentive. Matthews, having opted in, fits that bill. And Dallas, as a team in need of more assets to start properly moving forward, fit it as a team too.
Essentially what I’m saying is, bring Ian Mahinmi back to Dallas. Everyone wins.
Player Plan: Already opted in to a $18,622,514 player option for one final year. Dangle it as a carrot to all those teams looking to dump 2020 expiring salary.
June 29, 2017
SG, 6’5, 220lbs, 30 years old, 8 years of experience
The pre-injury Matthews looks like he’s never coming back, and while the new era-Matthews is a decent (if overplayed) three-and-D option who does a decent job of checking opposing star wings, the cost of such a limited player at this time is strikingly huge. Considering the team’s overall situation, it is not one moving assets to get rid of, but as popular as Matthews is and as hard as it works, it doesn’t help to have it there. Perhaps there is another year or two of small improvements back to where he used to be coming up.
Player Plan: Two years for a combined $37.5 million approximately remaining, including a player option for 2019/20 that he should be expected to exercise. Move if possible, but do not give up assets to do so.
August 12, 2010
This year, a GM-less Blazers did it again. They signed another Utah restricted free agent (this time, Wesley Matthews) to a frontloaded offer sheet they were hoping the tax threatened Jazz wouldn't match. And this time, it worked.
Matthews's new contract calls for the following cap numbers:
2010-11: $4,627,000Notice that the 2011-12 salary is 108% of the 2010-11 salary, and thus Matthews is the getting salary possible after his signing bonus is accounted for. The first set of numbers, however, are how he will appear on the cap for whichever team owns him. Portland did pretty much the exact same thing to Utah this offseason that they did last year, and this time, it worked.
May 20, 2010
[...] However, last offseason, several rookies did sign only one year deals. You will note that drafted rookies usually did not; the only ones who did were Goran Suton (who was not expected to make the team, and didn't), Jack McClinton (same, twice), Jon Brockman (whose deal was fully guaranteed, unusually) and Patrick Mills (who signed his tender offer of a one year unguaranteed minimum salary long after training camp, which gives us the distinct if unsubstantiated belief that the Blazers weren't expecting him to do it; for more behind the protocol of contract tenders to draft picks, click this). The rest, however, were undrafted. West, Tolliver, Martin, Jackson, Shakur and Hunter were midseason pickups, and while the overwhelming majority of rookie training camp pickups signed only one year deals, only three of them made their respective teams; Trey Gilder (quickly waived by Memphis), Marcus Landry (who almost made it the full year before being waived by Boston last month) and the eponymous Wesley Matthews.
The reason Matthews is still here, the reason he made it beyond any guarantee dates and into the fire of his impending restricted free agency, is because he's quite good. Matthews has been in the rotation for the Jazz ever since preseason, and was flopping his way into charging fouls up to and including the Jazz playoff run, which ended last week with defeat to the L.A. Lakers. Due to his usage and ability, Matthews is expected to command some money above the minimum salary this summer. The question is how much he can get.
March 15, 2010
[...] But the larger, general point remains. You see it a lot, when D-League players come in and contribute at least 85% of what the multi-year veteran they're replacing can give, to a watching audience shocked by their competence. This happens every year, and this year has been no different, with players such as Sundiata Gaines, Reggie Williams, Anthony Tolliver, Chris Hunter and others readily contributing to NBA teams. Utah themselves kind of did this when they brought in Wesley Matthews in the offseason, a man so beautifully average that he made Ronnie Brewer expendable. About 40 or so NBA rotation players are entirely replaceable by players outside of the NBA, who would be deemed to have NBA talent had they had the opportunity/fortune of those in front of them. This is particularly the case with wing players, but also applies to all positions, and it's not just something that's been the case since the D-League existed. For example, for all these years Calvin Booth has been bringing in paychecks and signing multi-year contracts, how much worse than him has Zendon Hamilton been? Pretty much no worse at all, really. But Booth had opportunity and fortune, and Hamilton did not. So Hamilton grafted for whatever money and employment he could get, while Booth got much more money than his play merited and a prolonged career based off one timely summer. It's somewhat unfair, but it's just how it is. (And despite how it may appear, that's not meant pejoratively towards Booth. Take what you can get, Calvin, and God bless you for that.)
The NBA prefers familiarity, and familiarity breeds the opposite of contempt. Some players get more than they deserve, while their comparable peers run up the air miles just trying to find the right situation. There is nothing especially wrong or flawed about this circumstance, and it sure as hell applies to all works of life in some way. Yet it perhaps should be less of a surprise when a D-Leaguer or undrafted free agent is brought in and is able to be a consistent distributor in an NBA rotation. It's normal, it's sensible, and it's worth considering when you start giving average players MLE money. Any team that does its homework can find minimum salary talent. Utah are one such team - they've since done it again with Othyus Jeffers - and it's a shame they didn't have one more left in the gun.