Proposed Trade Sends Mavericks $78 Million ‘High-Level Paint Protector’

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban and head coach Jason Kidd

Getty Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban and head coach Jason Kidd

On August 30, Zach Buckley of Bleacher Report published a column titled “Realistic Trade Packages for Every NBA Team’s Worst Contract.” In the story, Buckley proposed that the Dallas Mavericks trade Richaun Holmes, Josh Green and Jaden Hardy to the Toronto Raptors for Jakob Poeltl.

“Fred VanVleet and Nick Nurse both left Toronto this summer, and it’s possible Pascal Siakam and O.G. Anunoby could depart during the next one. A top-to-bottom reset might be required of the Raptors soon, and Poeltl wouldn’t help with that,” Buckley wrote. “He could, however, possibly be flipped to a center-needy shopper like Dallas, which might have strong enough win-now intentions to sacrifice two of its top prospects.”

Poeltl appeared in 72 games for the San Antonio Spurs and Raptors last season. He averaged 12.5 points, 9.1 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.2 blocks while shooting 62.9% from the field and 59.2% from the free-throw line. Poeltl signed a four-year, $78 million contract with the Raptors this offseason in unrestricted free agency.

The 27-year-old Poeltl has career averages of 8.1 points, 6.5 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 1.3 blocks in 488 games with the Spurs and Raptors while shooting 62.8% overall and 53.6% from the foul line. The Mavericks could start Luka Doncic, Kyrie Irving, Tim Hardaway Jr., Grant Williams and Poeltl if Dallas’ front office figured out a way to acquire Poeltl from Toronto.

Zach Buckley: Jakob Poeltl Is a ‘High-Level Paint Protector’

Buckley believes Poeltl is a “high-level paint protector.” It just so happens that the Mavericks have been looking for a center all offseason, according to NBA insider Marc Stein.

“Poeltl’s contract wouldn’t stand out on a lot of payrolls, but in Toronto, it might be a touch less valuable than the rest,” Buckley wrote. “The 27-year-old is a high-level paint protector who gets busy on the glass, sets strong screens and finishes from close range, but he can’t score away from the basket and sometimes must be benched late in games due to his awful foul shooting (career 53.6 percent).”

The Mavericks went 38-44 last season. They missed the play-in tournament after reaching the Western Conference Finals in 2022. Dallas re-signed Irving and Dwight Powell, signed Dante Exum, Seth Curry and Derrick Jones Jr. and acquired Williams and Holmes this offseason.

Mark Cuban Sends Strong Message on Luka Doncic, Kyrie Irving Dynamic

Mavericks owner Mark Cuban said on Philadelphia 76ers guard Patrick Beverley’s podcast that Irving knows Dallas is Doncic’s team.

The Mavericks were just 5-11 last season when Doncic and Irving were in the lineup together, per StatMuse. Dallas, though, quickly re-signed Irving in free agency this offseason and Cuban thinks Doncic and Irving can co-exist on the floor.

Irving re-signed with the Mavericks on the first day of free agency on a three-year, $126 million contract. The eight-time All-Star averaged 27.0 points, 5.0 rebounds and 6.0 assists in 20 games with the Mavericks last season.

Meanwhile, Doncic averaged 32.4 points, 8.6 rebounds and 8.0 assists last season for the Mavericks. The superstar recorded 36 double-doubles and 10 triple-doubles in 66 starts.

If Irving and Doncic are unable to co-exist next season, the Mavericks could trade Irving, who has a 15% trade kicker in his new contract with Dallas, according to Michael Scotto of HoopsHype.

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