Holiday Wish List: Dallas Mavericks
One year for Christmas when I was 14-years old, I received Creed's album, Human Clay, twice. Yep, you read that right, I received the same Creed album from two different people. I didn't even ask for it. Needless to say, it wasn't exactly the best Christmas for me that year.
The Dallas Mavericks are singing some holiday cheer as they find themselves as one of the top teams in the Western Conference. They are a bit cash-strapped this year and the next, but that doesn't necessarily mean they are not going to be buyers this season. While they don't necessarily need much, below are a few guys who could be on their holiday wish list as they make a push for the playoffs.
Robert Covington, SF/PF, Minnesota Timberwolves
Covington is one of the NBA's premier 3-and-D players, who's not yet a household name. The Timberwolves appear to be struggling once again and could be in a position to shake things up. He's seen a dip in minutes this year, so maybe that is foreshadowing to a possible trade. Covington has a very friendly contract and should be one of the Mavericks top targets if he becomes available and they become buyers. He'd by far be the best defender on the team, capable of defending multiple positions.
Bogdan Bogdanovic, SG/SF, Sacramento Kings
The Sacramento Kings are in an interesting position. After losing their first five games of the season, they've rebounded to win 11 of the next 19. They are on the bubble of the playoff hunt, but if things go downhill, they may be willing to sell off Bogdanovic. The Kings offered him a deal that he did not accept, and they will be cash-strapped going forward. He'd be a good pairing next to Luka Doncic, capable of hitting open shots and defending at a reasonable rate. He might be priced out of the range the Mavericks can realistically offer when the time comes unless another deal is done somewhere else.
Andre Iguodala, SG/SF, Memphis Grizzlies
There have been rumors for quite some time now revolving around the Mavericks trading for the former Finals MVP. Iguodala is a 35-year old versatile defender on a rebuilding Memphis Grizzlies team, who has yet to play a single minute this season. The Grizzlies have been holding on to the hope that the price tag they've set will entice potential buyers, but as of yet, no one is budging. This rumor has grown the most legs, but that doesn't necessarily mean it's the right deal to be had.
Danilo Gallinari, PF/C, Oklahoma City Thunder
It's tough to tell what is going to happen in OKC. They've been far better than most imagined they would be, but they are still not quite a playoff lock. If the franchise believes it's time to move towards a rebuild, Gallinari becomes an enticing trade piece. He's not young, and there are always health concerns, but he's on an expiring contract and has been one of the NBA's most consistent scoring big men. He's scoring 18 points a game and shooting nearly 40% from three. He'd slide right next to Kristaps Porzingis and provide incredible spacing for this Mavericks offense.
Marvin Williams, PF, Charlotte Hornets
The Charlotte Hornets are on the cusp of a playoff birth after an offseason where many predicted they'd be one of the worst teams in the league. It's hard to gauge how they'll approach the trade deadline. One player who probably becomes available is Marvin Williams. He's capable of playing three positions, though he mainly serves as a frontcourt player, not so much as a wing anymore. What's just as important as his role on the court is his role in the locker room. Williams is a glue guy, both on the floor and off. He'd step in and be a veteran leader on this young team while being a capable backup with the ability to hit the three.
Truth be told, the Mavericks don't have a long list of assets to acquire much right now. They have the Golden State Warriors 2nd-round pick, the expiring contract of Courtney Lee, and as much as it pains me to mention his name, Jalen Brunson. Although, it's probably in the Mavericks best interest to keep developing Brunson.
There's also Tim Hardaway Jr., who has a big contract but can also provide scoring when needed. Another team may be willing to bite if they felt he was the missing piece to their rotation. In addition to the above, they also have two trade exceptions that expire this season, which would allow them to match salary without necessarily moving a player out.
There is still plenty of time in the season, both the NBA season and the holiday season for something to happen. The Mavericks could approach this season similarly to Creed, with arms wide open, or they could just stand pat and see how the season plays out.