The Dallas Mavericks addressed several issues regarding their 2021-22 roster structure issues, adding two big men but losing shot creation from the perimeter with the departure of Jalen Brunson, who signed with the Knicks.
Recently, Mark Cuban appeared certain the Mavericks do not need another star and the team should gel together more and build on the successful 2021-22 season. Coming off a strong playoff run, the Mavs will look into building towards their success.
Dallas will certainly have enough to be among the best teams in the West. However, the team did not sign anyone to replace the qualities Brunson offered as a playmaker and shot creator especially in the big stage.
Obviously, there are two factors that played a role in that decision. First, Christian Wood is already a capable offensive threat, but his game will be elevated more with the presence of Luka Doncic as the primary playmaker.
Secondly, Tim Hardaway Jr. appeared in just 42 games before the team shut him down due to injury. Hardaway Jr. is expected to be healthy, which means the Mavericks should see again the best version of the former Knicks’ swingman.
However, the Mavs still should look into adding another guard, especially one who can generate his own offense.
Looking to replace Brunson
While Hardaway and Spencer Dinwiddie could be the answer to the question on “who is going to replace Jalen Brunson” in the Mavs’ offense, someone could argue that there is lack of depth in the Dallas’ rotation regarding the perimeter.
Spencer Dinwiddie, who was coming off the bench during the last season, he’s expected to receive a starting spot next year. In 23 games with Dallas, the former Nets and Wizards guard averaged 15.8 points on 49/40/72 shooting splits.
These are certainly solid numbers in a short stint, but Dinwiddie will be removed further away from a serious injury that made miss the whole 2020-21 season. That’s a huge plus for Luka Doncic and co.
In addition to that, the Mavericks brought in a solid contributor and rebounder in Christian Wood, who will have to show improvement on playing under a real creative force like Luka Doncic. Wood had a solid individual season with the Rockets.
He averaged almost 18 points and 10 rebounds through 68 games last season. His contribution in Houston, secured him a place in a postseason with great upside like the Dallas Mavericks.
Wood is a solid inside-out threat, putting 50 percent of his shots from the field and 39 percent of his shots from the three-point line. With Doncic beside him, it’s expected to be even more efficient in his scoring.
Another option could be Tyler Dorsey, who signed a two-way contract with the franchise, and could become an active member of the roster if he continues to be in the excellent trajectory he was since last season in the EuroLeague.
Should the Mavs add another perimeter player?
The Mavericks will be a solid team going forward, especially if Doncic performs on an MVP level from the start of the season. After making the Western Conference Finals, the Mavericks should look on ways to improve their squad.
They addressed their rebounding issues with Christian Wood and Javale McGee, but, they lost offensive firepower with the departure of Jalen Brunson. There were several reports suggesting the Mavs are interested in adding a guard in the mix.
Collin Sexton was referred as a potential target, while Patrick Beverley was also an interesting name reported for the Mavs. In any case, the team will have to give up assets in order to obtain any player.
The Mavericks are over the salary cap space threshold and they don’t have much room to wiggle. The only way they can add a player is via a trade or sign-and-trade. Sexton will be a perfect match for the Mavericks either as a Sixth Man or as a starter in my opinion.
Sexton is a similar case to Spencer Dinwiddie coming off a serious injury that limited him to 11 games last season. Sexton still is a restricted free agent and the Cavaliers are not willing to satisfy his demands, which are reported to be an annual salary around $20 million.
If a trade is to be occurred, Dallas will have to pack a combination of players with Davis Bertans and Dwight Powell being among potential candidates to be included in a trade offer. Patrick Beverley could also be an option, despite being known more as a defensive asset.
Beverley will be available in trade talks with the Utah Jazz declaring they’re moving towards a full-blown rebuild with the trade of Rudy Gobert and the reported trade talks around All-Star Donovan Mitchell.
In any case, the Mavs are not in a hurry to make a move, and they would probably like to see the team in action before deciding to make any new additions. But if they expect to become a legit contender, adding another shot creator and potential star could be on the cards.