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Analyzing what the Dallas Mavericks are losing in the Christian Wood trade

Forget about what we’re getting. What are we giving?

NBA: Minnesota Timberwolves at Dallas Mavericks Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

There’s been a lot of talk and analysis about what Christian Wood will bring to the Dallas Mavericks. And it’s all warranted. But I want to specifically focus on what Dallas is losing. Let’s go through each piece of the trade one by one.

Boban Marjanovic

This is far and away the saddest of the losses for the Mavericks. Forget whatever basketball opinions you have of Boban, the man was an incredible addition to this team.

Boban’s impact was made in ways that go beyond the stats. I mean, in his three seasons with Dallas, he only played in 100 games and averaged just over eight minutes per contest. But he’ll go down as a Mavericks all-time fan favorite.

Whether it was using the floor broom to get the ball down from behind the hoop, walking onto the court for warmups flexing with teammates, or his adorable friendship with Luka Doncic, Boban always brought pure joy to the Mavericks and their fans.

I won’t miss his eight minutes per game. I guess they were kind of fun, but it’s not like they were that productive or impactful. I will miss his presence, though. And I know I’m not alone in that feeling.

Sterling Brown

I had high hopes for Sterling Brown this season. I thought he would prove to be a quality rotation player — someone who can step in when needed and knock down some threes as well as play some defense. He never really got the chance, and that’s probably for good reason. I’m guessing Hall of Famer Jason Kidd knows more about what Brown’s deficiencies are than I do.

In 2021-22, Brown had arguably his least productive on-the-court season of his short career. I hope he can find a way into someone’s rotation eventually, but it was clear he wasn’t going to play meaningful minutes for Dallas.

Marquese Chriss

Chriss was one of the most fun finds during the COVID-19 hardship contract madness of the 2021-22 season. For a while, he brought some much-needed energy to the Mavs’ regular season. Ultimately, though, he just wasn’t good enough to crack the rotation in a meaningful way as the playoffs unfolded. The Mavericks will be fine without him.

Trey Burke

The Trey Burke saga is officially over. Some Mavs fans were begging for him to get more playing time (see Derek Harper on nearly every broadcast), and some were begging for him to never touch the floor (see me).

Burke has speed and offensive skills, but I never trusted him with the ball. Every time he had the ball in his hands, I covered my face and watched through a crack in my fingers, grimacing and hoping nothing bad would happen.

I wish him the best, but I’m glad I won’t have to watch those minutes anymore.

26th pick

This is where the rubber meets the road. This is essentially all the Rockets were trading for when they gave the Mavericks Christian Wood. This is what will go on to determine whether this trade was a success or not.

The 26th pick isn’t one that has a history of producing All-Star level players, but there are some notable guys to be selected with that pick in the last decade or so. 2021-22 rookie sensation Bones Hyland was taken with the 26th pick. I’d love to have Bones on the Mavericks. In 2009, Taj Gibson was drafted 26th overall. In 2020, eventual NBA Finals contributor Payton Pritchard was the 26th pick.

Again, I’m not here to discuss whether Christian Wood is worth the 26th pick in the 2022 NBA Draft. I’m just here to talk about what Dallas is losing, and the 26th pick is the biggest departing piece.