The Dallas Mavericks who are off to a 5-2 start and tied for second in the Western Conference, could be one piece away from having possible title hopes.
It has been a combination of Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis who have led the Mavericks to their hot start this season.
Doncic is facilitating the offense and almost averaging a triple double with 26.7 points, 9.9 rebounds and 9.1 assists per game.
Porzingis has been a defensive anchor, averaging 19.0 points, 8.1 rebounds and 2.3 blocks per game.
It’s clear that the Mavericks have their young duo in place for years to come, but according to Bleacher Report’s Zach Buckley, the team could eye Chris Paul as their ideal trade target this season and could strike a deal with the Oklahoma City Thunder before February’s trade deadline.
“The Dallas Mavericks might be closer to contending than everyone thinks if the Luka Doncic-Kristaps Porzingis pairing looks as good in practice as it sounds in theory. But this club could use another shot-creator, and Paul sits several stories above incumbents Delon Wright, Seth Curry and J.J. Barea,” Buckley states.
Paul reportedly pushed for more set plays last season, per ESPN.com’s Tim MacMahon, and Mavs coach Rick Carlisle is one of the best X’s and O’s tacticians in the business. Paul is also a good enough outside shooter (he has shot 37.1% from three-point in his career) that his arrival wouldn’t stunt Doncic’s on-ball development. If the Mavs want to go all-in, this is their move.
Paul has always been a “pass first” point guard and that would benefit Doncic and Porzingis by getting them easy and open shots, as well as take some pressure off of them to score in isolation.
The Thunder have piled up several future first round draft picks from trades in recent years and they could continue that trend to help build their team for the future.