Mavericks’ Luka Doncic ‘Could Realistically Work’ Alongside Superstar in 2023

Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic "could realistically work" with a recent champion in 2023 according to an NBA analyst

Getty Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic "could realistically work" with a recent champion in 2023 according to an NBA analyst

Luka Doncic “could realistically work” for the Milwaukee Bucks and vice versa in 2023 — this, at least, according to Wisconsin Sports Heroics’ McQuade Arnold, who ultimately felt the Bucks wouldn’t cede the assets to the Dallas Mavericks necessary to get a deal done.

“The 2023 season could realistically work for the Milwaukee Bucks and Luka Doncic, however, his cap hit increases every year after that,” Arnold prefaced before saying, “It goes all the way up to $48.9 million in 2026-27. The Bucks would likely need to let go of some key players in order to make that contract work. Something they would likely not be willing to do.”

While a Doncic-Giannis Antetokounmpo duo reads like a championship duo on paper, the only way the Slovenian guard would’ve hit the trade market this summer is if Kyrie Irving left Dallas in free agency; something that doesn’t seem likely due to the Mavs’ offering of the point guard’s preferred No. 11 jersey according to Dallas Basketball’s Michael Mulford.

“Irving, upon arriving in Dallas, requested to wear No. 11, which he had worn over the last six seasons in Brooklyn and Boston,” Mulford prefaced before saying, “Due to the mid-season request, the number switch was unable to happen and had to be tabled until the offseason. So, outside of learning more about both Lively and Prosper today, we also might have gotten some inside info on the likelihood that Irving remains in Dallas. And though nothing is certain, this announcement and all league-wide speculation point toward a reunion.”

Kyrie Irving Swap Between Mavericks & Clippers Floated

FOX Sports 1’s Nick Wright proposed a mock sign-and-trade involving the Mavericks and the Los Angeles Clippers that’d send Irving to Tinseltown in return for either Kawhi Leonard or Paul George.

“I would like to see a sign-and-trade with the Los Angeles Clippers — you guys are opening a brand new stadium, you can have a guy that puts butts in seats, and can give you a point guard scoring punch…it would shake the snow globe for both franchises that desperately need to shake it,” Wright said.

Wright is referring to the $1.2 billion Intuit Dome in Inglewood south of SoFi Stadium that is set to be completed in 2024. The Clippers’ first-ever exclusive home facility is set to house 18,000 fans. The likelihood Irving’s jersey will say Los Angeles on the front is slim, however.

Mavericks Tabbed to Fend Off Lakers, Re-Sign Kyrie Irving

Bleacher Report’s Andy Bailey is confident that the Mavericks will fend off the Los Angeles Lakers and keep Irving in the Lone Star State due to the backcourt chemistry with Doncic and the earning potential due to the team owning Irving’s bird rights.

“There has been plenty of chatter on the possibility of Kyrie Irving joining the Los Angeles Lakers — there could be other suitors who come calling in July, too,” Bailey prefaced before saying, “However, no team offers a better combination of talent and incentives than the Dallas Mavericks. When they acquired Kyrie, they also got his Bird rights. Dallas can offer five years and $272.9 million. No other team can go north of four years and $201.7 million. That difference in money and the budding chemistry between Irving and Luka Dončić is going to be enough to keep the eight-time All-Star in Dallas.”

By all accounts, Irving and Doncic will remain with the Mavericks for the long haul, or at least long enough to start the 2023-24 season together in the same lineup.