The Dallas Mavericks have been searching for a dependable center to pair with rookie sensation Luka Doncic, and their latest addition might be the answer. The team has signed free agent center DeAndre Jordan to a three-year deal, potentially replacing the lost minutes filled by Kristaps Porzingis last season. Going into the offseason, the Mavericks were searching for a new center after shipping out Porzingis as a free agent. According to one source, “It’s not a matter of when he wants to come back, it’s a matter of when he will come back. He’s not coming back.” The Mavericks could have made a last ditch effort to bring Porzingis back, but they have now moved on to other options.
If you’ve been following along with the Dallas Mavericks recently, you’ve probably heard a lot of chatter about Kristaps Porzingis’ lack of minutes. After all, the Mavs traded away their third overall pick to acquire the Latvian forward last year, and he’s still not getting his due.
Kristaps Porzingis, the Knicks’ Latvian sensation, showed once again why he is one of the most talented players in the league. Last night, Porzingis scored the game-winning basket to beat the Dallas Mavericks. Porzingis has quickly become one of the most exciting players to watch in the NBA. But to his credit, Porzingis is not a one-trick pony. He’s learned to play with a little more finesse. Last night, Porzingis wound up and hit a fadeaway jumper over Dirk Nowitzki.. Read more about kristap porzingis and let us know what you think.
Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis should be the cornerstones of championship-contending Dallas Mavericks teams for the next decade, but they have so far been less than the sum of their parts.
Different people have different ideas on what the issue is. According to common belief, Doncic is the alpha, whereas Porzingis believes he is the alpha. Porzingis’ viewpoint has a fault in that his body is more fragile than his ego. He’s not even close to becoming a co-star, much alone a star, on the court.
General manager Nico Harrison, like any self-respecting new employee at an organization with too many problems at the time, believes he has a solution that will maximize the team’s two major stars.
By the statistics, Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis are the best players in the NBA.
Kristaps Porzingis of the Dallas Mavericks controls the ball in the post during Game 5 of the NBA Western Conference playoffs against the Los Angeles Clippers at Staples Center. | Getty Images/Jevone Moore/Icon Sportswire
Doncic has the potential to be an elite NBA player for many years. He had three great seasons with the Mavericks at the age of 22. This past season, he shot 47.9% overall and 35.0 percent on 3-pointers, setting career highs in both categories while averaging 8.6 assists and 8.0 rebounds per game.
He’s still committing too many turnovers, but that’s mainly due to his aggressive approach to opponents. Dallas lost Trae Young in the draft-night deal to get Doncic, but it’s hard to argue that the Mavs didn’t break even at worst.
Because of the large amount of games he has missed, including more than a third of the 2020-21 regular season, Porzingis’ statistics are more difficult to evaluate. During the regular season, he, too, shot at a career-high % while averaging 20.1 points, but Porzingis faded away in the playoffs. And that’s where the problems started: fans who were on the fence about Porzingis after his first 100 games in Dallas abandoned him in force after his playoff flameout.
Then there’s Harrison.
Nico Harrison, the Mavericks’ general manager, believes Porzingis can be saved.
Only a month ago, it was widely believed that Porzingis would not return to the Mavericks this season. The head coach (Rick Carlisle) was dismissed with a year left on his contract, the Mavericks fired their general manager (Donnie Nelson), and it was clear that Doncic and Porzingis were at odds.
Hiring Jason Kidd, a former NBA point guard, as the new head coach supposedly resolves problems with Doncic, whose relationship with Carlisle had deteriorated over time.
Harrison believes the Mavericks will be able to work with Porzingis as well. Harrison seemed to rule out moving the 7-foot-3 Latvian during an interview with KRLD-FM in Dallas.
“I’m really looking forward to Kristaps. As translated by Audacy.com, he remarked, “I believe he’s finally healthy.” “I honestly believe that what Jason Kidd is going to offer, in terms of communication and truly putting his arms around people, he’s going to thrive in the system Jason Kidd is going to bring.”
Dallas has more work ahead of it.
The Mavericks haven’t advanced beyond the first round of the playoffs since winning the NBA title in 2011, so just putting Doncic and Porzingis together won’t bring them to the conference finals.
However, there’s no assurance that Harrison isn’t simply blowing smoke when he expresses confidence in Porzingis in order to boost his trade worth. If the Mavericks have to choose between keeping one or the other, they must retain Doncic.
Regardless, they must maximize the existing roster’s potential and/or make strategic additions.
Harrison maintained, “We have a lot of potential.” “There are a lot of talented free agents available. There’s a lot of potential.”
Ironically, Porzingis is often referred to as a “potential” player. Above all else, it’s time for the Mavericks to make their potential a reality.
Basketball Reference provided all stats.
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