‘Makes Sense’ for Mavericks to Offload Big Man in ‘Likely Trade’

Maxi Kleber and Davis Bertans of the Dallas Mavericks.

Getty Maxi Kleber and Davis Bertans of the Dallas Mavericks.

Ever since the Dallas Mavericks officially retained the rights to their 2023 first-round draft pick, rumors have mounted of the team’s interest in moving the No. 10 selection. If they were to do so, The Athletic’s Tim Cato believes that it makes the most sense for them to offload Davis Bertans in any potential trade.

“I believe it makes sense for the Mavericks to prioritize Davis Bertans’ contract being attached to the team’s likely trade of the No. 10 pick,” Cato wrote.

Bertans is owed $17 million next season, making him, what many believe to be, a negative asset. His production hasn’t looked like that of someone making the money that he does. Bertans appeared in just 45 games for the Mavs this year, averaging 4.6 points, 1.2 rebounds, and 0.5 assists while shooting 43.1% from the field and 39.0% from beyond the arc.

Cato then detailed how the Mavs could combine Bertans’ negative value with the No. 10 pick in order to bring in “positive value.”

“Because Dallas has so few pieces of value on its roster, and because we know the likelihood Dallas uses the No. 10 pick as an asset rather than on a prospect, it probably should prioritize Bertans’ contract being involved in it,” he explained. “Something like Bertans and No. 10 for Brooklyn [Nets]’s Royce O’Neale and No. 21 could make sense for that reason. It’s not a haul, not nearly the cure-all to this team’s ailing roster, but it exchanges the positive value of the team’s lottery pick for a decent rotation player and the chance at another on a rookie-scale deal. But it also removes Bertans’ negatively valued contract without using another one of the team’s limited number of positively valued pieces.”

Mavs ‘Widely Known’ to Be Pursing Trade Involving No. 10 Pick

Dallas’ desire to capitalize on the value of their first-round pick hasn’t been much of a secret. On June 6, Yahoo Sports’ Jake Fischer reported that it’s “widely known” that they’ve got interest in doing so.

“Dallas is widely known to be evaluating trade possibilities with the 10th pick to bring reinforcements to Luka Dončić, as well as All-Star guard Kyrie Irving, who will become an unrestricted free agent.”

Fischer first reported on the Mavericks’ plans last month, after the NBA Draft Lottery.

“There are other teams rival executives are already pinning as potential trade candidates,” Fischer wrote. “Dallas avoided disaster by landing its top-10 protected pick at the No. 10 spot, and the Mavericks are certainly expected to explore the market for that selection in hopes of adding to their All-Star backcourt of Luka Dončić and Kyrie Irving, the latter of which will become an unrestricted free agent this summer.”

Mavericks Want to Add Defense and Rebounding

With Dallas looking to bring in pieces around Irving and Dončić, General Manager Nico Harrison believes that the biggest needs are defense and rebounding.

He told reporters so back in April, during his exit interview.

“I think for us going into the offseason, the two biggest things that we need to work on is defense and rebounding,” Harrison said via the Dallas Mavericks official YouTube channel. “That’s going to be addressed.”

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