The Mavericks had quite an active draft night for a team that didn’t pick until 18th overall. After selecting Arizona wing Josh Green at number 18 and then Stanford guard Tyrell Terry at pick 31, a big time trade came out of nowhere around 10 PM on Wednesday night.
Sources: Dallas is sending Seth Curry in trade to 76ers. https://t.co/zPq0DqBkKQ
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 19, 2020
Pick 36 also went to Dallas in this deal and the Mavericks received Colorado forward Tyler Bey.
Curry came back to Dallas last summer on a four year/$32 million deal and definitely made that deal worth it in 2019-2020. He shot a career-high 45% from deep on over five attempts per night in 64 contests. At just 6-2, Curry playing major minutes certainly had an influence on the Mavericks defensive struggles throughout the season.
Enter Josh Richardson.
The 27-year-old stands at 6-5 and has a reputation as a strong, versatile defender who is a career 36% three point shooter. As a part of a middle-of-the-pack offense in Philadelphia last season, Richardson’s three-point shooting and overall scoring was down from his previous season with the Heat, but playing with Luka Doncic has certainly helped get some players’ offensive games back on track over the last two seasons.
Richardson is under contract for this upcoming season at $10.8 million and then has a $11.6 million player option for the 2021-2022 season that he wouldn’t seem likely to exercise considering that was from a four year/$42 million deal he signed after just his second season back in the summer of 2017.
Of course all Mavericks fans loved Seth Curry for what he did last season and even during his first stint in Dallas back during the 2016-2017, but Rick Carlisle seriously mentioned the team needing to improve their defense every time he was in front of the mic. Whenever your team has to have Seth Curry occasionally defending Kawhi Leonard or Paul George in a playoff series, that’s going to be problematic for your overall defense.
Even without factoring in Tyler Bey at pick 36, the Mavericks have acquired a piece that is ultimately more necessary for their team. They need the defense and versatility of Richardson more than they need the elite shooting of Curry.
One would have to think Richardson automatically slides into the Dallas starting lineup. Next to who? Definitely Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis. Nothing is assured beyond that as free agency is set to open on Friday and there are still plenty of moves to come.
While this was the first major trade the Mavericks made this offseason, it doesn’t seem likely to be the last.
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