Trades are coming. It’s December 15th and players who signed new contracts in the offseason can be traded as of today. That’s when trade talks really heat up. More than likely the Dallas Mavericks won’t be making any season-altering trades this season. But in case they do, let’s talk about the value of the players already on the roster.
Here’s how it works: these are my subjective trade values of the players on the Mavericks roster based on how likely Dallas would be to move them this season. I calculated it by thinking about how much other teams would want a player versus how important they are to the Mavericks. Disagree? Post your own list in the comments. Let’s go:
17. Javale McGee
The Mavericks made a large center a priority in the offseason, so they signed McGee and vowed to start him. That lasted a couple weeks before McGee was banished to the bench. Now he’s not seeing the floor at all, and is on the books for two more years past this season. It’s unlikely they can get off his salary without attaching a pick to it.
16. Theo Pinson
Pinson never plays and is on the roster to curate vibes. The Mavericks think that’s important, but it’s hard to see another team valuing that enough to swing a trade for him.
15. Kemba Walker
Walker could absolutely contribute to the Mavericks on a nightly basis—if his knees are healthy. Nico Harrison went on live radio and expressed his doubts about that, so it’s okay if you’re pessimistic about Walker’s signing. But betting on talent is always a good idea, and it cost the Mavericks nothing.
14. Frank Ntilikina
There was some hope that the Mavericks could find a way to unlock the former New York Knicks’ lottery pick’s potential. But so far Ntilikina hasn’t shown that he can contribute to the Mavericks, and it seems like he’s destined to head back to Europe to finish up his basketball career.
13. McKinley Wright
There’s some potential with Wright, but obviously the Mavericks don’t think he’s ready to get run in the NBA. Otherwise, they wouldn’t have signed Walker. Still, Wright could fill in as third string point guard in an emergency, and that’s something.
12. Davis Bertans
There’s a slim possibility that some team could be interested in Bertans’ shooting, but they’d have to be desperate (Los Angeles Lakers?). His contract isn’t great, but it’s movable, and could be used to make the money work on a bigger deal.
11. Tyler Dorsey
I doubt the Mavericks could get anything for Dorsey right now. If he was valuable enough to trade for a first round pick or a playoff capable wing, he’d be on an NBA roster right now. He is Tim Hardaway Jr. insurance, though, in case the Mavericks find a way to move off of Hardaway’s contract.
10. Christian Wood
What could the Mavericks get for Wood on the trade market? They gave up a first round pick and salary filler for him. There’s no reason to think Dallas could get the same in return, and in fact, at this point might get less. Would it be worth moving Wood for a second-round pick? I could see him adding value as a piece in a bigger trade, though.
9. Reggie Bullock
Bullock is the type of player every playoff team needs—when he’s actually hitting shots from deep. So far this season, he hasn’t done that. The Mavericks need him, though, because they aren’t deep when it comes to guys who can play defense and make shots from behind the arc. But if they can get something of value for him and think Josh Green can replicate his minutes, they should do the trade.
8. Jaden Hardy
A promising young player, Hardy isn’t much more than an ideal right now. He’s doing exactly what’s needed by putting up big numbers in the G League and impressing in short stints with the Mavericks. That’s all he needs to do to keep his value high.
7. Dwight Powell
Powell has become the Thanos of Mavericks roster construction. He’s inevitable. Powell isn’t valuable in the sense that he would vault a promising contender into favorite status. But every team in the league could use a player like him, whether they’re a contender or in the middle of a rebuild. He does what he’s asked to do and does it reasonably well.
6. Tim Hardaway Jr.
Hardaway is tough to gauge on the trade market. Another team could use him, since shooting is always a need. Hardaway has been the difference maker for the Mavericks in several wins over the last 10 days. But as we’ve seen, his shooting comes and goes like the wind. It might be best to sell high while they can.
5. Spencer Dinwiddie
With a contract that’s a bit of an overpay for his production, Dinwiddie’s market is probably cool, but the Mavericks could trade him in the right situation. Considering their guard situation, though, they’d have to get someone who’s a competent playmaker back, though. Anything otherwise would derail this season even further. That makes him pretty hard to trade as of now.
4. Josh Green
Green has progressed quite a bit from last year’s postseason, when he was close to unplayable. Now he’s got a consistent 3-point shot, albeit on a low volume of attempts, and plays solid defense. His passing is electric. He’s still a project, but one with an upward trajectory now. A team in the middle of a rebuild or on the cusp of playoff contention would probably love to have him on the roster. If the Mavericks swing a trade for a superstar next offseason, Green will more than likely have to be included in the package.
3. Maxi Kleber
Versatility heightens ceilings in the playoffs, and Kleber offers just that. His ability to defend in the paint and on the perimeter as well as shoot makes him valuable to any playoff team. His shooting can be streaky, though, and his body has troubling holding up over a full season. Because of this, and his age, it’s tough to see the Mavericks getting anything close to the value he brings to Dallas.
2. Dorian Finney-Smith
Finney-Smith is a tough trade target to discuss. In a vacuum, he’s extremely tradable. He’s a decent 3-and-D wing who rebounds exceptionally well. But he’s limited offensively, and his best defensive days are probably behind him. The Mavericks could never get equal value for Finney-Smith. He wouldn’t fetch a player better than he already is, yet no team is going to trade a valuable draft pick for him. Considering his role and what he would bring back, he’s the Mavericks’ second-most valuable player.
1. Luka Doncic
Who would the Mavericks actually swap for Doncic? The list probably ends at Giannis Antetokounmpo, and even then, he’s a few years older than Doncic. It’s possible you want to go with Doncic’s youth despite Giannis’ overwhelming athleticism and skill. Some might make a case for Jayson Tatum, and I couldn’t argue. But Doncic is as close to un-tradable as it gets.