So many potential trade targets for Dallas would either take them out of the running for a max free agent in 2021 or simply cost too much for their role as a third option with the Mavericks. Most of the names that people are throwing around are intriguing as far as fit, but Dallas may be very conservative in the way they go about acquiring a third star or even any quality role players. That said, here are four players that may not be the best idea for the Mavericks.
Hield is a name that’s been thrown around a lot. It is no secret that he’s not exactly thrilled with his current situation in Sacramento (he’s reportedly not returning Luke Walton’s texts). It seems he’ll be available to the highest bidder, but I don’t think that should be Dallas.
Bringing in Buddy would likely mean that moving on from Tim Hardaway Jr.. Hield will be on the books until 2024 making $24 million next season and $19 million in his final season. Having a front-ended deal is a team-friendly concept, however Buddy is not the right third piece for the Mavericks. He’s an incredible shooter, yes, but he’s also one of the very worst defenders for his position in the league. Adding his contract to the books would make 2021 free agency significantly harder. Hield is an incredible player, but a very short-sighted move.
I’ve seen a lot of people discuss Hayward as a potential target, but I am not a fan. Given the very recent injury concerns, I don’t think he would be a smart acquisition. His numbers are decent and he would be a good fit with this team, but they’re not $34 million good.
He’s so expensive that bringing him to Dallas would take the Mavericks out of any other free agent discussions for this coming offseason. Though it’s easier to trade for players in the off-season with the relaxed rules on salary, he’d still require giving up significant salary and thus quality players in any trade. Finally, it makes sense to prioritize adding defense and there are much better options in that regard out there.
I love CJ McCollum on and off the court. I have a ton of respect for him, but I do not think a third option for any team should be making $100 million over the next three seasons. CJ’s game is incredible and hewould be a fun fit next to Luka, but that is a massive contract. Compared to Hield and Hayward, he’d likely require a great deal to acquire in a trade.
However, from a fan perspective, I could buy into this if it actually did happen because CJ is a great team guy and player. It taking the Mavericks out of free agency in 2021 would leave a sour taste in my mouth. This trade would be just too expensive.
Oh boy where do I even begin here? While I have said so many times that I think the Mavs desperately need to add defense and rebounding, Gobert is not the answer. Dallas wasn’t statistically terrible at rebounding last year when compared to other teams around the league, however, there were many times where I found myself with my hands on my head because it seemed like the Mavericks could never get the rebounds in big moments. I have fan PTSD thinking back to opposing teams missing free throws at the end of games and getting the offensive rebound.
The answer to that should be found in a small-ball big. Gobert would clog the lane for Luka, even though he would be a fantastic lob target. The league has shown that two dominant bigs just don’t work consistently in today’s NBA. Gobert’s contract expires after the 2020-2021 season, but he’s an expensive addition at $25 million until then. The Mavericks could do a lot with that kind of money and Dallas would be better off keeping their options open.