Mavs trade down again, dump Cunningham

DALLAS -- The Dallas Mavericks traded down for the second time in the first round, shipping the No. 16 overall pick along with 2012 first-rounder Jared Cunningham and the 44th overall pick to the Atlanta Hawks in exchange for the 18th pick.

The Mavs are motivated to shed salary as they prepare to try to sign Dwight Howard to a max contract with a first-year salary of $20.5 million. At the beginning of the night, Dallas needed to trim $3.8 million to have that much cap space.

Cunningham is due $1.2 million next season. The difference in cap holds between the No. 13 (the Mavs’ original pick) and No. 18 is $374,500.

The Mavs traded No. 13 to the Boston Celtics for No. 16 and two future second-round picks.