The trade deadline is approaching in exactly seven days and rumors are already starting to fly. Which teams plan to blow it up? Which are a piece or two away?
The Mavericks are always an interesting team to try to predict, in part because their front office simply does not leak information. And, considering how the Rondo trade blew up some great team chemistry last year, I'd suspect they aren't interested in making any kind of major move. In fact, Mark Cuban has already said they don't plan on doing anything, but he's not one to not listen to a phone call, at least.
If anything, the Mavericks should be trying to upgrade in a couple of areas (one of those "one or two pieces away" teams). So, here is some information for you to work with. This is purposefully a very broad overview, so keep that in mind as you read on.
What assets do the Mavericks have?
Theoretically any player is an asset, but I'm going to go out on a limb and assume Parsons, Matthews and Williams aren't being made available. That might be something of a reach about D-Will, but just a gut feeling.
Dirk has a no-trade clause in his contract. I threw the centers on here only because their deals are so friendly for trade purposes, but I can't see Zaza going anywhere either -- for no reason other than blowing up team chemistry seems like a risky proposition after last year.
If you want more information on player contracts, here's a good website.
- Justin Anderson: Anderson's great play of late makes him all that much more valuable as a trade option. This is the exact position where the Mavs do need his skillset, though, so unless you're trading him for a significant upgrade at the same position, I'd hate to see Simba gone.
- Dwight Powell: Another young player who is providing value to the Mavs this year, and seems to be getting better. The team finally has some exciting young players, which probably means they're being dangled as trade bait as we speak because #Mavs. (I hope I'm wrong.)
- Raymond Felton: This is the most intriguing on this list to me. Felton has more than proven his value this year, and he's on an expiring deal, which makes him a little more valuable than he might otherwise be. Dallas has some depth at guard (which they've needed to rely on this year already, so take that for what it's worth). But, it's a position they can afford to be a little flexible with in trades.
- J.J. Barea: Let's be real here, no one is probably going to take on Barea's ridiculous contract, and the team loves him too much to trade him, but if they can find a taker in a good trade, I'd be all for it.
- Devin Harris: I had forgotten Devin had re-done his deal. He has two more years left on it, and can't seem to stay healthy, and is another guard the Mavericks seem to like a lot regardless, but again, guard depth is something the Mavs do have to work with this season if they decide to make a deal.
- Zaza Pachulia: I can't see him being made available but for the perfect trade, but you never know. He's more than proved his value this season and is on a one-year deal.
- JaVale McGee: sure, why not!
- Draft picks: Lol what are draft picks? The Mavs will most likely owe their first rounder this year to Boston, and definitely owe their second round pick to Boston, though they have another second round pick to work with. More information on that here.
What would the Mavericks (realistically) try to trade for?
As mentioned above, the Mavericks are good on guard depth. What they could use is a backup wing and a backup power forward, or at least upgrades in those areas. The danger there, of course, is that they'd likely have to trade away their developing young players who currently help with depth in those areas (Anderson, Powell) to get a more experienced player who can help them now.
Whether or not they're willing to do so is anyone's guess, but for the right player I can't imagine they wouldn't consider it. If they can make that trade without giving up at least Anderson, all the better.
Who might be a viable trade partner for the Mavs?
For all the rumors remotely involving the Mavs, check out this list, but here are some thoughts to get you started.
Several teams have been linked to trade rumors thus far, most notably the Hawks, who seem from reports about ready to blow it all up. Al Horford, Jeff Teague, Korver could be available. We've already discussed the pros and cons of one trade scenario with the Hawks -- Teague-for-Deron.
Anyone on the Nets probably! Andrea Bargnani is an interesting name who could help the Mavs.
The Magic are supposedly looking to make a big move. Of the players on their roster, Tobias Harris is intriguing for the Mavs, but I don't think they'd be willing to give up the kind of return the Magic are looking for.
Other teams who should be sellers: I'd imagine New Orleans is looking for a fresh start and could make anyone other than Anthony Davis available. Rumor has it Ryan Anderson is being widely shopped. If the 76ers would be willing to part with Carl Landry, that could be of interest. With the Suns having just fired their coach after a couple years of being mired in mediocrity, I'd assume they're looking for a roster refresh. Same for the Wizards, who are reportedly actively engaged in trade talks.
Just a sampling of what might be out there for the Mavs as things heat up. If you want to go play "let's make a deal" with the ESPN Trade Machine, go crazy with your favorite trades or trade partners for the Mavs in the comments!