Opinion: The Dallas Mavericks Should Keep Their First Rounder
By Kohl Rast
The Dallas Mavericks may not have the ideal draft position at number five, but they will certainly have a player with high expectations available to them. Why waste that on something that hasn’t been historically in favor of the Mavs franchise?
Luka Doncic. DeAndre Ayton. Marvin Bagley III. Mohamed Bamba. Jaren Jackson Jr. Michael Porter Jr. Two of these players will undoubtedly be available to the Dallas Mavericks with the fifth pick in the 2018 NBA Draft. Each of these players have reason to be considered at the top of the draft. And yet rumors of Mavs trades are circling every single day.
Now let’s clarify this with some background information about me. I am an avid believer of trades and free agency over the NBA Draft. That’s right, a diehard Mavs fan who would rather scour through the free agency pool and call every team about trades than trade into the draft or move up in the draft. That does not, however, mean that I am completely against the draft.
I have seen more than enough good draft picks to know that the college players are worth investing time in. I have also seen enough busts to know better than to believe everyone who is picked, even in the top five, will turn into NBA talent. For that reason, I have always believed that using a draft pick as trade bait was just as good as actually making the pick.
But all of that has changed this year.
The funny thing is, that didn’t even change because of the talent at the top of the class. I think it is going to be a very talented draft and each one of the guys there could definitely turn into an all-star. They could also turn into a bust. That’s just how it works.
So why would I want to change my focus on the draft? There are two reasons.
1. Mavs fans are pumped
This draft is the most important one for the Mavs rebuild. It is unlikely that we will have another draft pick this high for years to come and the talent is at a great level through the first 6 or 7 picks of this draft, making it very exciting. Every Mavs fan out there has looked into at least a few of these players and already picked their favorites.
It would be hard on the fanbase if Dallas decided to move out of the top 5 for a young player. Even if that player has proven he can play, it still would sting a little bit. I don’t want the Mavs fans to go through that and I feel like this would be better for the team and fanbase to unify on. But that is just my personal opinion.
2. These are pretty unique players
The players I am focusing on in this case are Luka Doncic, Mo Bamba, Marvin Bagley, and Jaren Jackson. Each one of these players has something that we have never seen before. For Doncic, it is a young player coming in with a lot of success in another professional league. It is rare to see a European player come in this hyped and at this age.
For Bamba, well, obviously the size and length. Aside from that though, he is one of the biggest players we have ever seen who also has a lot of lateral quickness. For Bagley, we have seen players similar but I have never seen anyone get off the floor as fast as he does. His rebounding numbers are going to be phenomenal. Lastly, a player like Jackson who is billed as an elite rim protector is also an excellent long range shooter. That could be a pretty special combination.
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The NBA Draft is right around the corner, with just three weeks to go until it all goes down. I know who I want, but I just hope the pick stays with Dallas at this point, regardless of who it might be.