The Dallas Mavericks must improve their roster this summer, but they have limited assets to use. Luka Doncic finished second in the NBA in scoring, but his team missed the postseason entirely. Dallas has to find more impactful pieces around him or risk losing their superstar.
The franchise’s top priority is re-signing Kyrie Irving. The eight-time All-Star is an unrestricted free agent, and the Mavs cannot afford to lose him just months after giving up two starters and three draft picks to acquire him. Irving is in no rush to make his decision, but the Lakers appear to be emerging as a suitor. Will Kyrie be back?
Irving is far from the only All-Star hitting the open market this summer, and the NBA’s introduction of the second tax apron could throw a wrench into the team’s planning. How long will fans have to wait to find out what happens?
Free agency technically begins on July 6, but that date is closer to the finish than the start. Teams can begin negotiating contracts with free agents on June 30, and many deals are reported seconds after the opening buzzer. The contracts cannot become official until the moratorium is lifted one week later, and things can change as the Mavericks saw with DeAndre Jordan in 2015.
Fans should have their notifications ready because Adrian Wojnarowski and Shams Charania will be dropping news when things kickoff at 5 p.m. CT on June 30.
This is not the most star-studded free agent class, but it is headlined by James Harden, Khris Middleton, and Irving. Former All-Stars Draymond Green, Russell Westbrook, Kristaps Porzingis, Kevin Love, Nikola Vucevic, Fred VanVleet, and D’Angelo Russell could all hit the open market this summer.
It will be a busy one for the Mavericks as they have seven soon-to-be free agents on their roster. Who will they bring back? What players exit? Kyrie Irving, Dwight Powell, Christian Wood, Markieff Morris, Theo Pinson, Frank Ntilikina, and Justin Holiday are all unrestricted free agents and free to sign with any team.
With their current cap holds, the Mavs are projected to be over the luxury tax line. Christian Wood is almost certain to depart, so the team’s space will come down to re-signing Kyrie.
If Irving returns, Dallas will not have cap space, and they will be reliant on their exceptions to improve their roster.
If Kyrie decides to play elsewhere, the Mavericks could create just over $25 million in space to sign free agents. That could mean targeting someone like Fred VanVleet or breaking it up into multiple players that improve the roster’s depth and flexibility.
It is a crucial offseason for the Dallas Mavericks. They must improve their roster significantly if they want to jump back into contention and keep Luka Doncic happy. Can the Mavs do it? Stay tuned to find out.