Monta Ellis and Jose Calderon are now part of the new core for Dallas. Mavs owner Mark Cuban made that so by giving them multiyear contracts going into the 2013-14 season. It’s established that they were part of the problem when it came to Dallas’ issues on the defensive end of the floor. Veteran guard Devin Harris was one other cog of the guard rotation. Though he enters free agency this summer, there is still a sense of optimism that Harris will re-sign with the Mavs. If Dallas works up a deal similar to the one Harris was willing to sign last summer -- three years and $9 million dollars -- he’ll be in a Mavericks uniform next season.

If that’s the case, one subtle move the Mavs could make to improve their defense is moving Harris into the starting lineup in place of Calderon. If Harris hadn't missed half of the season due to his toe surgery, it’s not out of line to think that coach Rick Carlisle would have considered a lineup change. The fact that the Mavericks were battling for their playoff lives and had already established a rotation and substitution pattern, however, figuratively squashed the idea of making a change.

Calderon’s numbers prior to Harris’ debut Jan. 18 look solid. He averaged 31.5 minutes, scoring 11.9 points per game on 46.3 percent shooting from the field and 45.9 percent shooting from 3-point range.

Once Harris returned, Calderon averaged 29.4 minutes per game, scoring 11.0 points per game on 44.9 percent shooting from the field and 43.9 percent shooting from 3-point range. There’s a bit of a drop-off, but the bigger issue comes in Calderon's defensive rating. On average, he gave up 106.8 points per 100 possessions prior to Harris’ debut. Once Harris came back, Calderon gave up 109.6 points per 100 possessions. A number of factors might have come into play, but there was a notable difference in his productivity on defense.

Meanwhile, Harris averaged 20.5 minutes, scoring 7.9 points per game on 37.8 percent shooting from the field and 30.7 percent shooting from 3-point range during the season.

It’s apparent that there is a give-and-take approach Carlisle would be making by swapping them in the lineup. You lose Calderon’s range and scoring potential, but you gain Harris’ speed, athleticism and versatility on the defensive end. Harris held a defensive rating of 104.6 during the regular season. While he wasn’t a lockdown defender, he had the speed and footwork to stay in front of quicker perimeter threats and was known as one of the Mavericks who would step in and take charges, which shows a strong disposition on defense.