One of the most oft-cited criticisms of the Dallas Mavericks this past season has been their over-reliance on the brilliant Luka Doncic.
So many people have said that the Mavericks needed to give Doncic better support around him that it has almost become a mantra for the team.
However, there is a degree of truth to it, as the team’s lack of quality behind their All-Star Slovenian ace was exposed during their run in the playoffs this year.
Well now Dallas has taken a big step towards addressing it, by sending four players, plus the 26th pick in this year’s forthcoming NBA Draft to the Houston Rockets, in exchange for center/power forward Christian Wood.
Details Of The Deal
In exchange for Wood, the Mavericks are sending four players, whose contracts are almost
expired, to the Rockets, plus their number 26 Draft Pick this year.
The players on the move are Boban Marjanovic, Marquese Chriss, Sterling Brown and Trey Burke.
The move benefits the Mavericks in a number of ways.
Firstly, they have created a good degree of flexibility within their roster now to make the changes necessary to help Doncic flourish with the team.
Secondly, Wood’s arrival will give the Mavericks a dominant big man who can play two different roles on the team and who will certainly complement Doncic’s skill-set.
Lastly, Wood is due to make just $14.3 million for the forthcoming season, the final year of his current contract, so this isn’t a deal which locks the Mavs in long-term should Wood not come up to scratch.
However, if Wood does perform well, as expected, then the Mavericks are in a good position to negotiate a new deal with him going forward.
The Rockets Rebuild Set To Take Off In The Draft
Having already traded the likes of James Harden, and tried but failed to move on John Wall
over the last season, the Houston Rockets rebuild will see the gas turned up a notch this year through the Draft.
Currently, the Rockets hold the third, 17th and now the 26th picks in the first round of the draft, which takes place a week today on the 23rd June.
In moving on Wood on to the Mavericks, the Rockets now create a space in their team for their 2021 top draft pick Alperin Sengun to step up and play a more regular role for the team an center.
In addition, the four players received are not on long-term deals, which means that the Rockets now have flexibility over who they want to keep for their roster moving forward or not.
Having taken Jalen Green in the first round last year, plus with several other exciting prospects aged 24 or younger, the Rockets could well have a very different look once this summer’s draft is over.
However, a key issue will remain the future of John Wall, who is scheduled to be the second-highest paid player in the NBA next season with a salary of over $44.3 million.
The Rockets agreed to trade Wall away a while back, but have found no takers for Wall’s salary.
A potential trade with the Los Angeles Lakers for Russell Westbrook earlier this year fell through due to the Lakers’ reluctance to add a future first round pick to the deal.
Wall has one more year of his deal to run and the Rockets are working with the player to try and find him a new home, but as yet, this issue may well be one of the determining factors in who the Rockets will keep and who they won’t be able to keep, for next year’s NBA season.