Are Mavs really much better?

The kudos have come from far and wide for the work of the Dallas Mavericks’ front office this summer.

The popular belief is that the two major moves the Mavs made this summer — the trade for center Tyson Chandler and signing of small forward Chandler Parsons in restricted free agency — could push Dallas from fighting for an eighth seed to the middle of the West playoff pack.

Well, according to a loose application of one advanced statistic, the Mavs have actually taken a significant step back with their summer remodeling. The total win shares from last season’s Dallas roster equaled 48.3, just a fraction of a win shy of their actual total of 49. Last season’s total win shares from the 13 players on the Mavs’ roster right now: 43.7.

Just the stats:
Dirk Nowitzki: 10.9
Jose Calderon: 6.3
Brandan Wright: 5.1
Monta Ellis: 4.9
Samuel Dalembert: 4.9
Shawn Marion: 4.3
Vince Carter: 4.3
DeJuan Blair: 3.4
Jae Crowder: 2.3
Wayne Ellington: 0.7
Bernard James: 0.1
Ricky Ledo: 0.0
Shane Larkin: -0.1
Gal Mekel: -0.4
Total: 48.3

Dirk Nowitzki: 10.9
Chandler Parsons: 7.6
Brandan Wright: 5.1
Tyson Chandler: 4.9
Monta Ellis: 4.9
Richard Jefferson: 2.7
Jae Crowder: 2.3
Raymond Felton: 2.2
Rashard Lewis: 1.7
Devin Harris: 1.6
Greg Smith: 0.2
Ricky Ledo: 0.0
Gal Mekel: -0.4
Total: 43.7

Some things to consider that aren’t reflected in those win share totals:

*The Mavs still have their $2.7 million cap-room exception at their disposal. The player they sign with that slot is likely to have been worth at least two win shares last season.

*Dallas is counting on Chandler’s performance last season with the New York Knicks being the exception, not the beginning of a steep decline. He had at least 9.3 win shares in each of the previous three seasons, including 9.4 with the Mavs in 2010-11.

*The Mavs are also banking on a bounce-back year from Felton, who had the second lowest win share total of his career last season. Felton had more than four win shares in four of the previous five seasons.

*A knee injury limited Smith to 11 games last season. He had four win shares as a 16-minute-per-game role player the previous season.

*It stands to reason that Harris can at least double his win shares from last season, when he sat out the first half of the year while recovering from complicated toe surgery.

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