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What the Summer Has Told Us About Dallas Mavericks Future?

Photo: Michael Lark/ Dallas Sports Fanatic

What the Summer Has Told Us About Dallas Mavericks Future?

If you’ve been on Twitter lately, there’s a common theme among a lot of Dallas Mavericks fans; impatience.

The “do something!” syndrome is in full effect even if fans don’t really have a solid grasp on what that “something” is they’d like Dallas to do.

When you look at the landscape of the NBA as it stands now, with the behemoth in Oakland looming large, others are asking another question. What does it matter?

So far, Dallas’ offseason has not been bad. Actually, there’s a lot of reason for hope since the Mavericks drafted potential star Dennis Smith Jr. to fill their need at point guard. If summer league is any indication, “Junior” looks to have possibly have been the steal of the draft. Other NBA execs have hinted as much to coach Rick Carlisle himself.

Aside from that? A contractual standoff with fellow centerpiece Nerlens Noel that shows no signs of ending soon and a trade with Miami for Josh McRoberts at the cost of A.J. Hammons. Oh, and Dallas gets a second-round pick in 2023. 

Let’s be honest, the acquisition of Smith aside, that’s not really enough to satiate a fan base or really give much in the area of a clue where Dallas is headed this offseason. Is there anything going on behind the scenes?

Dallasbasketball.com’s Mike Fisher and David Lord have postulated that the trade for McRoberts could be a harbinger of another big move to come from general manager Donnie Nelson. McRoberts’ salary is expiring at the end of next year and, when combined in with certain trade exceptions can match up to $10 million, an amount large enough to garner a noticeably significant signing for the Mavericks.

There are other rumors that Dallas is back to playing “plan powder” in that it’s hoarding cap space for the glut of free agents coming next summer, and prioritizing cash to return potential starter Seth Curry when his two-year, $6m deal expires. That ideas has the “not again” groans already reverberating off the walls at American Airlines Center.

If we’re trying to rectify both of these strategies, one thing is clear; the Mavericks are focusing on youth. They didn’t offer the corpse of Derrick Rose $10 million to come mentor Dennis Smith Jr. for next season and they didn’t back up the Brinks truck in an attempt to bring 31-year old Kyle Lowry back on this side of the border. Dallas has prioritized re-signing Noel (a deal that will get done, by the way), and is focusing on developing young talent (see Jonathan Motley, potentially Brandon Ashley and, of course, Noel). There’s still time for other moves.

If you were to ask me how I’d rate the Mavericks’ summer, I’d simply say it’s not over yet. This is typically the time of year, when all the big fish have been caught, where Cuban and Co. reel in some keepers.

I'm Zack Cunningham, a broadcast journalism major from Abilene Christian University's class of 2008. I've lived in Texas for 28 of my 31 years on this Earth and I've followed the Mavericks since 1998. My first memory of them was the 2001 playoffs and being extremely happy when they beat the Jazz, but sad when they lost to the Spurs in five games in the conference semifinals. However, seeing Dirk drop 42 stands out to me, punctuated by his dunk in garbage time. I covered high school sports for the Cleburne Times-Review from 2008-12 before moving into the tech industry. Most recently, in 2015 covered the Mavericks for the Fanatic briefly before moving to work with Mike Fisher at DallasBasketball.com. I am married to my beautiful wife, Jessica, and have been for just over five years now. We live in Carrollton with our dog, Zara, and cat, Drake. I'm looking forward to covering them again this season with the Fanatic!

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