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Don’t worry about the Mavericks not drafting Giannis Antetokounmpo

The Mavericks could’ve drafted the Greek Freak, but it’s okay that they didn’t (it’s totally not).

NBA: Milwaukee Bucks at Dallas Mavericks Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Unless you’ve stuck your head in the sand, blasted your phone into outer space and burned down your house, you’ve probably heard a thing or two about the season Giannis Antetokounmpo is having.

Need some refreshers? Well just about every national outlet has gushed about him and for good reason. He’s basically a 6’11” point guard with arms longer than the Mississippi River. It’s not fair.

He was also very much available for the Mavericks to draft back in 2013.

The Mavs had the 13th pick; Giannis went 15th. This is the sort of thing that happens a lot with the draft, especially for the Mavs. Giannis is more of a sticking point than other missed opportunities, though, because Mark Cuban said Donnie Nelson wanted to drafted him, but Cuban stuck to the Mavs’ penny-pinching plan to land Dwight Howard in free agency that summer. He was so dedicated to that plan it had its very own theme song.

Now, three and a half years later, the Mavs are the worst team in the Western Conference, so you can just guess how that plan went. And Cuban’s revelation about Nelson wanting to draft Giannis combined with the Greek Freak redefining what an NBA wing is capable of has led to a pretty salty fan base.

FEAR NOT! I am here to assure you that it is totally okay that the Mavs passed on a player who is revolutionizing the NBA. I will give you a cup of hot cocoa, wrap a blanket around you and soothe all your fears and nightmares. It’s going to be okay.

(Not really).

Reason 1: Giannis would not have become the player he is now in Dallas

Okay, the Mavs draft Giannis. Everyone is pumped. Except in your heart of hearts, do you truly believe that Giannis would have averaged 23-8-5 as a rookie in Dallas?

That 2013-14 roster had two forwardswho would have been ahead of Giannis on the depth chart — Shawn Marion and Jae Crowder. With Rick Carlisle’s penchant for small ball, throw in minutes for Devin Harris off the bench as well. Marion had the backup power forward spot locked in too, so it would have been nearly impossible for Antetokounmpo to crack the rotation.

In comparison, Giannis got over 24 minutes a game his rookie season in Milaukee. LOL. If the entire roster came down with wild boar disease, Giannis still wouldn’t have cracked 10 minutes a night that season as a Maverick.

Even when Justin Anderson was going good, he was yanked in and out of the rotation his rookie year. Carlisle has spoken about it taking draft picks up to three years to learn and get comfortable in the league — and he really sticks to it. Giannis might have come along as a nice player and maybe taken a leap after the Rondo trade if he stepped in for Crowder, but I doubt his presence would have altered the Mavs’ plans to go after Chandler Parsons, so there’s another road block.

Giannis got regular minutes right away in Milwaukee, and the constant, steady growth and experience clearly helped him adjust to the NBA game. Also, the Mavs haven’t re-signed a player they drafted since Josh Howard, taken in 2003. Yep, over 13 years ago. KIDS ARE GOING TO HIGH SCHOOL IN DALLAS AND DON’T KNOW WHO JOSH HOWARD IS.

Hell, not drafting Giannis saved us from bitching every night about his playing time and avoiding a “Free Roddy B” part two and more problematic t-shirts. I can’t even imagine the type of brain aneurysm I would have had watching Carlisle roll out a JJB-Monta-Harris three-guard lineup against the Rockets in the 2015 playoffs while Giannis stared up at the ceiling on the bench like Carmelo Anthony in a timeout huddle.

Phew, thanks Mavs. Saved us a headache.

Reason 2: Giannis might have become the player he is now — but not in Dallas

Here’s the main reason we should just suck it up and get over Giannis: the Mavs took Shane Larkin in that draft, and he was included in the Tyson Chandler trade in the summer of 2014.

Guess who the Knicks probably would have wanted to make that deal? Guess who wouldn’t have gotten enough minutes in his rookie season to prove himself more valuable than Crowder? Yep, that’s Giannis.

Imagine how much worse Giannis’ incredible season would feel right now if you knew he was actually on the Mavericks’ roster at one point? I’d throw myself into a ditch and light myself on fire. Every full-court, four-dribble, fast-break slam would have me looking at the TV in a PTSD trance like that Bradley Cooper scene in American Sniper. Except instead of war and gunshot sounds it’d be calls of Giannis Mavs highlights from Mark Followill. We’re healthier this way.

So there you have it! Let go of Giannis, because it would have ended terribly for the Mavs because everything is awful and life is meaningless.

Told ya you’d feel better!

*Throws self into oncoming traffic*