Mavs' Butler: 'We're not that far off'
Butler, an attractive trade chip for the Mavericks because of his expiring contract, wrote that it'll be "an interesting summer" on a blog entry attributed to him on HoopsHype.com Thursday night.
But Butler, who averaged 16.3 points last season (15.2 after being traded from the Washington Wizards to Dallas at the All-Star break), doesn't think the Mavericks need to do anything drastic to position themselves to take a title run and hopes owner Mark Cuban will give this core more time.
"If you ask me, I would like this team to stay together," Butler blogged. "We're not that far off. We could return next season with the exact same squad and compete for the title. We have the experience, leadership and everything else in place to make it happen."
The Mavericks finished the regular season as the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference, but were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs by the San Antonio Spurs.
Butler expressed his desire to stay with a contender rather than being traded elsewhere.
"I would like to continue to play for a winning franchise like the Mavericks," Butler blogged. "I have no more years to waste on rebuilding or something like that. ... All that said, I'm aware that it's all going to depend on what Dirk Nowitzki decides."