Chasing Corey


Twitter / Corey Brewer ... via kwout

ESPN.com's Marc Stein handicaps the race for the services of Corey Brewer, putting Boston amidst the contenders, but noting they have the least to offer the defensive-minded swingman:

It shouldn’t surprise you to hear that Boston is pushing as hard for Brewer as anyone, given that the Celts tried to trade for Brewer before Minnesota sent him to New York as part of the three-way Carmelo Anthony deal. Celtics president Danny Ainge and coach Doc Rivers are said to be Brewer fans and personally lobbying him. Hard.

But Boston and San Antonio, in this case, can’t compete financially with the Dallas Mavericks, who have their full mid-level exception remaining -- worth just under $4 million as of Wednesday because the figure is reduced daily from its original $5.8 million at this juncture of the season -- to comfortably exceed any offer the Celtics or Spurs could make.

The Celts actually have the least to pitch financially of the three teams, sitting more than $5 million over the luxury-tax threshold and limited to offering a pro-rated share of the league minimum just as they gave Murphy. With the Spurs only about $1 million away from the tax line and likewise only possessing cap exceptions worth $1.5 and $1.2 million, respectively, Dallas would appear to have a clear bidding advantage over their neighbors from the NBA elite, fitting as it might be to see Brewer wind up with the Spurs given the frequent comparisons linking Brewer to Bruce Bowen.

Sources say Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, like Rivers, has been lobbying Brewer to try to seal a deal. There’s a decent chance that Sasha Pavlovic, who earlier this season completed two 10-day contracts with Dallas, will return to the Mavs if they don’t get Brewer ... and possibly land with Boston if the Mavs do.

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