The Dallas Mavericks sent shockwaves through the NBA last week when the team opted to trade away Kristaps Porzingis.
In the deal, Dallas sent Kristaps Porzingis and a second-rounder to the Washington Wizards in return for Spencer Dinwiddie and Davis Bertans.
Shortly after the move was announced, Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic offered his blunt thoughts on it.
One day later, it was team owner Mark Cuban’s turn.
“I think KP’s an incredible talent,” he said, per Callie Caplan of the Dallas Morning News. “But we needed that shooter [Bertans] and we needed another ball handler [Dinwiddie] who could create a shot, and unfortunately that was the only way we were going to get them.
“It was that simple — getting two guys who fill roles that we really needed, and the fact that we have played OK without KP. But I think that doesn’t take anything away from KP being a great talent, and I actually think he’s going to be better with the Wizards than he was with us.”
Cuban’s rationale makes sense, but it’s still hard not to feel like his analysis of this was a little overly-rosy.
Dinwiddie underperformed in Washington and became a locker room pariah, so he can only go up from here. Bertans, who earned a monster contract thanks to a limited stretch of sharpshooting two years ago, similarly can only improve at this point.
But neither guy is on Porzingis’ level. Yes, the 26-year-old is hurt often and hasn’t proven himself to be a reliable Robin to Doncic’s Batman, but he is still better than the two pieces Dallas got in return for him.
It’s hard not to look at this trade as a.) an admission of failure that the trade to acquire Porzingis initially was a mistake, and b.) a tacit acknowledgement that Porzingis and Doncic still hated each other.
That’s certainly one way to make a Super Bowl pick. https://t.co/u5dFj628Z8
— Game 7 (@game7__) February 12, 2022
The Mavericks are playing well this year. Maybe this will change that, maybe it won’t.
However, it’s difficult to see a scenario where everyone looks back on this particular deal and considers it a win for Dallas.