Those two are off the table in a trade, but anyone outside of Doncic and Porzingis is available in a win-now move that helps the Mavericks — and Dallas is working hard to get a deal done, reports Brad Townsend at the Dallas Morning News.
• Dallas wants to acquire a third star to augment the pairing of Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis, and if that takes adding other teams’ unwanted salaries so be it.
• All — repeat all — Mavericks players not named Doncic or Porzingis are available.
• Though they currently own the 18th and 31st picks in the Nov. 18 draft, the Mavericks have a strong desire to trade into the lottery (picks 1-14).
We can debate whether moving up into the lottery in this draft is a win-now move, but the point of this rumor is clear: Dallas realizes it has taken care of the hardest part of building a contender; they have the top-five (maybe top-10) player, now they just need another star and the right team around him.
This report feels like a counter to reports (and talk around the league) that Dallas wants to preserve cap space because Giannis Antetokounmpo leaves Milwaukee the Mavericks might be frontrunners to land him. Remember, everything right now is spin and/or smoke designed to distract.
Dallas may well be open to a trade that brings them a young third star to pair with Doncic and Porzingis, but whether that player is available right now is another question. However, if that player becomes available, then keep an eye on the Mavericks.