Dallas Mavericks: Revisiting the 2007 NBA Draft
Our trek through the Dallas Mavericks Drafts of the past stops today in the year 2007.
The draft analysis continues for us here as we delve into the 2007 NBA Draft. The ’07 draft happens to be one of the most unforgettable drafts in NBA history and is remembered as one of the biggest draft busts in the history of the league.
The draft in question also happens to be one of the more top-heavy drafts that the NBA has seen with almost all the players that made an impact in the league selected in the first round. Many of those that were selected, however, have been household names since the day they entered the draft.
Notable Players Drafted in 2007
Greg Oden – Rd. 1 Pk. 1 (POR)
Kevin Durant – Rd. 1 Pk. 2 (SEA)
Al Horford – Rd. 1 Pk. 3 (ATL)
Mike Conley – Rd. 1 Pk. 4 (MEM)
Corey Brewer – Rd. 1 Pk. 6 (MIN)
Joakim Noah – Rd. 1 Pk. 9 (CHI)
Jared Dudley – Rd. 1 Pk. 22 (CHA)
Marc Gasol – Rd. 2 Pk. 48 (LAL)
State of the Mavs
The Dallas Mavericks were coming off an emotionally and physically draining season in 2006 after fighting their way through the playoffs and looking like a championship team in the making, they fell in 6 games to the Miami Heat. A devastating loss to an excited and ready team left them wanting more.
Fast-forward to the 2006-07 season and Dallas was hungry. After setting a franchise record 67-wins that still holds true today, disaster struck in the form of Don Nelson. The 2007 playoffs will not be revisited by me due to the heartbreak that still surfaces each time it is mentioned but, in summation, Golden State won the first round 4-2.
This was the same year Dirk Nowitzki won the MVP award and we had put together an incredible team and a capable coaching staff. The loss many want to believe was just a fluke and that the Mavericks were capable of beating any other team in the playoffs, but the fact remained that elimination was the end result for Dallas.
Improvement was definitely an option for the Mavericks but little pieces were the only change necessary. Was the draft really the way we were going to get those little pieces that would put us over the edge?
What the Mavs Did
Dallas somehow never seems to have a first round draft pick each year and, as I have delved deeper into the history of the Mavs, I am starting to learn that the reason for this generally stems from trades made in previous years for that one piece we believe will put us over the top.
In this case, Dallas had previously traded its first round pick to the Golden State Warriors for numerous role players that didn’t last very long. The Warriors ended up trading the pick as well until it finally fell into the hands of the Philadelphia 76ers who picked Petteri Koponen.
In case you didn’t already know, the Mavs currently own the rights to Koponen if he ever decides to come from overseas and play in the NBA so the trade didn’t hurt too bad.
The Mavericks then made some moves to acquire three different 2nd round picks by the names of Nick Fazekas, Reyshawn Terry, and Renaldas Seibutis. Terry and Seibutis never played in an NBA game while Fazekas stayed with the Mavs shortly with little to no impact before being waived.
What the Mavs Should’ve Done
Well it is very easy to look back and say hey, maybe the Mavericks should’ve taken a chance on some guy named Marc Gasol. But, in reality, 47 other players went before Gasol making it difficult to fault the Mavericks for taking a shot on some foreign players that were wild cards in the draft.
The Mavericks certainly did not achieve the services of any legitimate player in the 2007 draft but, aside from somehow finding a way to trade into the high lottery picks that year, the Mavericks really did not do anything wrong.
Once Mike Conley left the board, it is easy to see that only one real bonafide star was left on the board and no one even knew about him at the time. For that reason, the Dallas Mavericks may not have passed the 2007 draft, but they certainly did not fail.
Next: Dallas Mavericks: Is Joakim Noah A Good Fit?
With the years 1999-2007 now covered, will the Mavericks fight their way back into a solid draft pick from 2008-present? Most of you might already know the answer to that question, but stay tuned for our coverage of what the Mavs did and should’ve done here. If you would like to go back and read the previous coverages, follow these links: 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, and 2006.