Mavs showing a championship push

— -- The reason MFFLs -- Mavs Fans For Life -- love Mark Cuban as an owner is because he's all about winning championships.

He could not care less about second place. He wants rings and trophies.

Winning really matters more to him than money, which we know isn't the case with every NBA owner. Or even half of them.

Cuban can make more money -- a whole lot more money. But he'll never make enough money to buy a Larry O'Brien trophy because they're not for sale.

Winning is the reason Cuban is emotionally invested in every game. And every call the refs make. And pretty much every player wearing a Mavs' jersey.

Sometimes, of course, that's good. And other times, it makes you cringe because we all know Cuban can be petulant.

But at least he cares. He's not satisfied with the Mavs' title in 2011. He wants to make a legit run at another one.

When Cuban asked Dirk Nowitzki to give the Mavs a hometown discount last offseason, which he did in signing a three-year deal for $24 million, Cuban didn't stick the savings in his pocket.

He signed Chandler Parsons for $46 million over three years. The Mavs added center Tyson Chandler, and now they've worked a deal with the Boston Celtics that will bring perennial All-Star point guard  Rajon Rondo to Dallas -- and it all cost was Brandan Wright, Jae Crowder, Jameer Nelson, a future first-round pick that's lottery protected in 2015 and a future second-round pick.

The Mavs' mission is clear: Give Dirk the best possible opportunity to win another ring.

Aside from the Mavs' much-talked about defensive woes, the only real issue this team had was poor point guard play from Nelson, who somehow played 26 minutes Tuesday night and didn't score or register an assist.

Now the Mavs have made point guard a strength, which is huge in the Western Conference, where Oklahoma City's Russell Westbrook, San Antonio's Tony Parker, the Los Angeles Clippers' Chris Paul, Portland's  Damian Lillard, Golden State's Stephen Curry and Memphis'  Mike Conley reign.

If your point guard is getting destroyed nightly, you can't hope to advance out of the West, so Cuban pulled the trigger on a huge deal.

Besides, one of his goals is to make sure the Mavs are just as competitive in Dirk's golden years as they were when he was in his prime. Cuban doesn't want Dirk suffering on a raggedy team the way Kobe Bryant is enduring with the  Los Angeles Lakers or Kevin Garnett is doing in Brooklyn.

The NBA, more than ever, is about star quality. The game is about acquiring stars and figuring out how to persuade them to work together if it's not a natural fit.

Championship contenders usually have two, maybe three stars. Rondo, a consummate point guard, gives the Mavs a star to team with Dirk and burgeoning stars such as  Monta Ellis and Parsons.

Cuban bought the Mavs in 2000, and they won more than 50 games in each of the first 11 seasons he owned the team.

Three times the Mavs won more than 60 games and twice they advanced to the NBA Finals. They lost to Miami in 2006 after leading the series 2-0, and beat Miami with LeBron James and Dwyane Wade.

The only time the Mavs have missed the playoffs during Cuban's ownership occurred in 2012, and injuries limited Dirk to only 53 games that season.

There's zero guarantee Rondo will bring the Mavs a title. There's not even a guarantee he'll be here next season since he's a free agent.

We don't know if his mercurial demeanor will mesh in the Mavs' happy locker room, of if he and Ellis can mesh on the court since each needs the ball to thrive.

That's all irrelevant because Rondo is worth the risk.

What's important is the Mavs have done everything in their power to put a championship team around Dirk, which is all he can ask.

If this doesn't work out, the way the Lamar Odom move didn't work out, then the Mavs will move on and Cuban, general manager Donnie Nelson and Rick Carlisle won't spend any time second-guessing the trade.

They'll simply continue their quest to put a championship team together.