A day after the Los Angeles Lakers were swept out of the playoffs, Colin Cowherd reported on The Volume that Dallas “had their eye on” Anthony Davis around the trade deadline this past year and that we will hear “something” about a potential deal in the next month.
Davis is coming off of a playoff run where he averaged 23 points, 14 rebounds, and three blocks per game while making the Western Conference Finals. To make his money work this would almost certainly have to be a sign-and-trade involving Kyrie Irving. Cowherd says that the Mavericks would “love” Davis, but history says this would be a huge mistake. The Mavericks are less than a year and a half removed from moving on from Kristaps Porzingis, who clearly was a misfit with Luka Doncic. They made the Western Conference Finals with a three-guard lineup that suited Luka Doncic’s playstyle much better. Trading Irving for Davis would be taking two, maybe even three, steps back after a step forward in dealing for Irving.
Davis has been largely unreliable and not worth the headache that he will surely bring. In his final game on Monday, he was outplayed by Aaron Gordon (who is a good role player in his own right) and shot 6-for-15, including 6-for-13 in the paint. To compound the fact that he has a horrifying injury history and has played in fewer games than Porzingis since Porzingis was traded to Washington, there are nights where Davis just does not show up and his effort was constantly being questioned in the playoffs. He had flashes of the player some used to consider the future of the league when he posted 30 points and 20 rebounds in game one against the Warriors. Unfortunately, we were reminded of who he really is when he had 11 points and seven rebounds just two nights later.
Dallas obtaining Davis would be another mistake in the seemingly never-ending number of deals that have stunted the success of Luka Doncic’s tenure. They just went through a horrible breakup involving Doncic and a max salary big-man and to believe that they could run it back with a different outcome is utter insanity. Doncic needs the player that Irving is on offense, not another guy who will stop the ball movement on his post-ups. Outside of Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray, the successful guard-big pairing of your two best players is in the past. It didn’t work for Philadelphia, it didn’t work for the Lakers (which was a direct result of Anthony Davis), and it did not work with the Mavericks just two years ago. If the Lakers call about an Irving for Davis swap, Dallas should hang up.