The Dallas Mavericks did not make any additional trades at the deadline following their earlier blockbuster for Kyrie Irving. In a market dominated by an excess of second round picks, the Mavericks simply did not have the ammunition to get any deals done. Dallas had already exhausted their entire supply of tradeable second rounders over the last few years, and rival teams were not interested in acquiring Christian Wood or Tim Hardaway Jr.
Still, the Irving trade helped the Mavericks significantly heighten their ceiling for this season; it just would have been nice to improve on the margins a little more. Despite the deadline coming and going, there is still an opportunity for Dallas to do that. The buyout market looks to be flush with players that have the ability to make a positive impact on contending teams’ rosters. There are holes to fill, and the Mavericks really need to grab one or two of these guys. Let’s take a look at some players who could be good fits.
A victim of the Lakers massive roster upheaval, Beverley was dumped to the Orlando Magic in exchange for Mo Bamba and draft compensation. Although the Magic could opt to keep Beverley around to help mentor their young roster, a buyout has been reported as likely. Although Beverley is aging and has become a journeyman over the last few seasons, his energy, tenacious defense, and tertiary playmaking ability could definitely help the Mavericks. He’s having a bit of a down year shooting the ball, but is a career 37.6% three-point shooter. Perimeter defense should be a top priority for Dallas after losing Dorian Finney-Smith, and Beverley is likely going to be the best defender on the market. He and Luka also share the same agent, so it would make a lot of sense to go after him. He would be my number one target.
The Hornets acquired Jackson and draft compensation from the Clippers for Mason Plumlee and Shams Charania has already reported that Charlotte is likely to buy him out. Jackson fills a need for the Mavericks, who are still without a reliable ball handler to bring off the bench. According to multiple sources before the deadline, the Mavericks checked in on Jackson and there was some kind of framework for a potential Jackson/Christian Wood swap. Obviously, that didn’t come to fruition but I definitely expect Dallas to kick the tires on him in the buyout market.
Jackson fell on hard times for the Clippers over the last two seasons, shooting 41.8% from the field this year after just 39.2% the year before. However, he was incredible in the 2021 playoffs and played a large role in eliminating the Mavericks in the first round. It’s clear that Mavs Brain Trust likes his game, and his ball handling plus scoring ability would be a big boost for the second unit.
Donnie Nelson just woke up in a cold sweat. Try as they might, the Mavericks can never escape being linked to Danny Green. Although no one will be forced to tune in to his podcast this time around, Green will certainly be available after playing just three games for Memphis and getting dumped to Rockets in a three-team trade centered around Eric Gordon. The question is this: is Green completely cooked? Or does he have one last bench 3-and-D role in him? He did shoot 38% from three a season ago in Philadelphia.
It’s unclear if Green has the ability to be a positive defender at this stage in his career, but it probably wouldn’t hurt too much for Dallas to find out. They need wing defense in the worst way, and taking a chance on Green could pay off if he can provide some of that.
Also a part of the Eric Gordon trade, the Clippers hilariously shipped Wall back to the Rockets, who have every intention of immediately buying him out. Wall fell out of favor with the Clippers, who boast a surplus of guards. He hasn’t been bad this year! The John Wall of old is never coming back, and the jumper is absolutely ghastly, but he can still get to the rim and set guys up off that penetration. It would be interesting to see a bench unit led by Wall and Wood, reunited after a rocky stint in Houston. In theory their games complement each other well on offense.
Despite not being traded at the deadline, it appears the Wizards are ready to let Barton go after an unsuccessful partnership. Barton is having a bad year, shooting under 40% from the field and playing generally poor defense. However, he’s only a season removed from a very solid year with the Nuggets and may just need a change of scenery. I always liked Barton when he was in Denver as an irrational confidence kind of guy, sort of like their version of Tim Hardaway Jr.
The problem with Barton is that the Mavericks don’t really need another guy like that. They just tried desperately to get rid of the one they already have. Barton is a better playmaker than Hardaway but I’m not sure you can trust him to run an offense at this stage in his career. He’s similar to Reggie Jackson to me, although I do like the additional size that Barton brings at 6’6.
After keeping Christian Wood, I don’t expect the Mavericks to go after a big on the buyout market. But if they do, Ibaka would make some sense. It never happened for him in Milwaukee, playing just 35 games over the last two seasons with the Bucks before getting moved to Indiana and waived at the deadline. He could be completely washed. It’s not a great sign that his previous team thought he was unplayable. But if he has anything left, he could provide some versatility and rim protection in the frontcourt.
It’s unclear at this time if the Pistons will buy the expiring Noel out. But it would make sense for them to do so, given their logjam at the five position in the wake of the deadline. If Noel does get bought out, he would be my number one big-man target. His rim protection and overall defensive game would help a ton. Plus, it would be really funny, especially for our editor Josh Bowe.
Westbrook is definitely getting bought out by the Jazz, but he almost certainly will not be a Dallas Maverick, And that is likely for the best. Although he could fill the secondary playmaking need, Westbrook is too volatile to rely on. The Mavericks could not count on him agreeing to a diminished role. I also would imagine that he still has no love in his heart for Mark Cuban.
Other names to keep an eye on if they get bought out: Alec Burks, Terrence Ross, Derrick Rose, Dewayne Dedmon, Rudy Gay, Kevin Love, Corey Joseph.