Mavs interested in Eric Gordon as summer fallback option?

The odds of the New Orleans Hornets trading shooting guard Eric Gordon before the Feb. 21 deadline are slim.

The odds of the Mavs trading for Gordon before the deadline are much closer to none.

However, ESPN’s Chris Broussard reports in an Insider column that the Mavs, Houston Rockets and Golden State Warriors are among the teams that have inquired about Gordon. In the cases of the Mavs and Rockets – a couple of teams that will have enough cap space to enter the Dwight Howard summer sweepstakes – the inquiries are likely about exploring a potential offseason fallback option.

The Dallas front office must do its due diligence on all potential stars who could be available, but Mark Cuban has made it clear that he considers overpaying a player with a massive contract one of the biggest mistakes the Mavs could make under the new collective bargaining agreement.

Gordon, who reluctantly returned to New Orleans last summer after the Hornets matched an offer sheet he signed with the Phoenix Suns, is due $44.7 million over the next three seasons. That’s a ton of cash for an undersized, oft-injured shooting guard.

Is Gordon worth that kind of money when the Mavs could probably re-sign O.J. Mayo for significantly less?

Maybe the Mavs are infatuated with the upside of the 24-year-old Gordon, who averaged 22.3 points on 45 percent shooting for the Los Angeles Clippers a couple of seasons ago, and believe he’d thrive playing with Dirk Nowitzki in coach Rick Carlisle’s system.

To trade for Gordon, regardless of what it’d take to get him from the Hornets, the Mavs better be completely confident that he’s capable of being the face of the franchise during Dirk’s golden years.