Marcin Gortat has recently been snapped taking his pet pig for a walk in a shopping centre in Poland. This picture came just days before reports surfaced that suggested the Dallas Mavericks were interested in acquiring Gortat's services.
Gortat had an excellent year for the Washington Wizards, helping them return to the Eastern Conference semi-finals for the 1st time in 8 seasons.
Gortat saw the most minutes per game this year of any in his career and put up his usual reliable numbers with 13.2 points, 9.5 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per game. Gortat also showed off an ability to pass well in a Wizards side that displayed excellent ball movement and his career high 1.7 assists per game give testament to this.
Gortat was a part of the Wizards solid starting line-up, 1 of only 4 5-man units to play more than 50 games together while averaging more than 13.0 minutes on the floor together. This line-up of Wall-Beal-Ariza-Nene-Gortat is one that Washington would desperately like to keep together yet will be difficult given Gortat and Ariza's pending free agency.
For the Mavericks, Gortat fills a need. Dallas' starting center Samuel Dalambert is playing on his 5th team in 5 years and at 33 is not a premier option at the 5 spot. Gortat could come in and instantly sure up Dallas' starting 5, helping fellow European Dirk Nowitzki with a final push at a 2nd NBA title.
Whether or not the Mavericks can afford him, however, is up for debate. The Wizards have plenty of cap space available to them and could definitely match any offer the Mavericks are likely to throw his way. This situation becomes more interesting, though, when one considers Trevor Ariza.
The Wizards are said to wish to keep both their free agents this summer though affording both of them may prove tricky. Should the Wizards prize Ariza's services over Gortat's, we may well see the big Pole playing for Dallas or any other team that might enter the race for his signature.