Carter signing with Memphis stings Mavs

The Dallas Mavericks will miss Vince Carter.

They’ll miss his scoring and playmaking off the bench. They’ll miss the spacing he provided with his perimeter shooting, something the roster sorely lacks at the moment. They’ll miss his veteran presence in the locker room.

The Mavs valued all these things from the 37-year-old sixth man who proved a lot of critics wrong during his three seasons in Dallas. They just didn't value them enough to keep him from leaving for more money.

Carter, a Mavs bargain for a little more than $3 million per year over the past three seasons, will sign a three-year, $12.2 million deal with the Memphis Grizzlies, ESPN.com’s Marc Stein reports. The Mavs had been optimistic that Carter would re-sign for the cap-room exception of $2.73 million, the most they could give him with all of their salary cap space used on the Chandler Parsons offer sheet.

A source told ESPNDallas.com that Carter informed the Mavs he would return to Dallas for a two-year deal worth $8 million, but the Mavs could only offer that much if the Rockets exercised their right to match the offer to Parsons.

However, instead of waiting, Carter seized the opportunity to get that raise from a Western Conference playoff team that's also in need of scoring and playmaking off the bench.

The Mavs still hope to add a significant piece to their bench with the cap-room exception. Other targets include guard Mo Williams and center Chris Andersen, sources said.

But losing Carter is a big hit to the Mavs, both on the floor and in the locker room.

There was a lot of mutual love and respect between Carter and the Mavs. That's why the Mavs were so optimistic about the odds of keeping him. But that respect wasn't reflected with a promised pay raise, so Carter moved on to greener pastures, leaving big shoes to fill on the Mavs' bench.