The Best “Top Six” Draft Picks in Dallas Mavericks History
By Kohl Rast
The Dallas Mavericks will be picking somewhere in the top 6 in the 2019 NBA Draft. Although the Mavs have only had a handful of top 6 picks in the team’s history, who have been the most notable ones over the years.
The Dallas Mavericks are not a team that is very familiar with the draft lottery. In the nearly 40 years that the Mavs have been an NBA franchise, they have selected in the top 6 of the draft only 9 times. Of those nine players selected by the Mavs, only a few panned out to become solid NBA players.
Although we will be looking mostly at the top 3 in that draft range in Mavs history, let’s review the other six players that didn’t make it to the top. Some were pretty good while others were not.
Bill Garnett: You probably have never heard this guy’s name before and you are not alone in that. Garnett was the 4th overall pick by the Mavs in 1982, but never did much to contribute to the team. He played in only 4 NBA seasons, two with the Mavs and two with the Pacers. His career averages were 5.5 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 1.3 assists per game.
Doug Smith: Another player who is pretty unknown from Mavs history, Smith was drafted 6th overall by Dallas in the 1991 draft. Although he had a couple decent years with Dallas, he lasted only 5 total seasons (4 in Dallas, 1 in Boston) before leaving the NBA. His career averages were 8 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 1.4 assists per game.
Jim Jackson: Finally a name we recognize. Jim Jackson was the first of the “Three J’s” drafted by the Mavs with the 4th pick in 1992. Although the team had some star power going forward, bad relations between players escalated, largely because of Jackson. He had a serviceable 14-year career in which he bounced around to 12 different teams, but his best years were in Dallas. His career averages were 14.3 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 3.2 assists per game.
Sam Perkins: Perkins played in a total of 17 NBA seasons during his career after being drafted with the 4th overall pick in 1984. Perhaps his biggest legacy is being the player selected in between Michael Jordan and Charles Barkley in the ’84 draft, but he did have a solid career in which he averaged 11.9 points, 6 rebounds, and 1.5 assists per game.
Jamal Mashburn: The first well-known player on this list, Mashburn was selected 4th overall by the Mavs in 1993, a year after picking Jim Jackson. Mashburn went on to have a stellar 11-year career in which he played for four different teams. He went to one All-Star game and made the All-NBA team the same season. His career averages were 19.1 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 4 assists per game. He played in Dallas for three and a half years.
Devin Harris: An all-time Mavs favorite, Devin Harris was selected 5th overall in the 2004 NBA Draft. Although the pick did not belong to the Mavs that year (after winning 52 games the year prior), they made a trade with the Washington Wizards to acquire who they believed was their point guard of the future.
Harris has had a great career up to this point but he never really hit the full star potential that was hoped for from him. His career averages up to this point are 11.1 points, 2.2 rebounds, and 4.1 assists per game.
Now let’s look at the top 3.
Next: #3: Jason Kidd