Dallas Mavericks: How much love can DeAndre Jordan get in one season?

Dallas Mavericks DeAndre Jordan Copyright 2018 NBAE (Photo by Glenn James/NBAE via Getty Images)
Dallas Mavericks DeAndre Jordan Copyright 2018 NBAE (Photo by Glenn James/NBAE via Getty Images) /

It’s likely DeAndre Jordan will only be with the Dallas Mavericks for one season. How will Mavs fans remember his time in Dallas?

First, DeAndre Jordan was loved by Dallas Mavericks fans. He was the long-awaited free agent, the big fish Mark Cuban finally snagged. We all rejoiced. Then, he was hated, a waffling snake who went back on his word. He held the Mavericks hostage during Emoji Gate and then re-signed with the Clippers, backing out on his verbal agreement.

The first time he played in the AAC after that fiasco, Mavs fans booed him heartily. Then, time went by. The Clippers didn’t advance past the second round of the playoffs, and in the meantime, the Mavericks only made the playoffs once. Imagine the vitriol if the two teams had faced each other in the postseason.

But they never did, and the animosity faded. Sure, Jordan’s actions made it easy for Mavs fans to root against him and the Clippers. But there just wasn’t anything to fuel the fire for a long time. Jordan said all the right things after the whole incident, and there just wasn’t this intense Mavs-Clippers rivalry to build on. Things died down, and while what Jordan did wasn’t forgotten, the Mavericks moved on.

Times changed

Dallas drafted Dennis Smith Jr. and Luka Doncic. It’s hard to hold on to the past when the future is so bright.

Can Luka Doncic be a good defender. Must Read

Then the rumors started. The Mavericks were trying to swing a trade for Jordan. Yes, that DeAndre Jordan.

The reaction from Mavs fans was strong. Some had moved on and were willing to give him a chance. Years with a talent drought can make you awfully forgiving. Others wanted no part of Jordan, still disgusted with his actions three years earlier. More than a decade of winning can make you awfully proud.

The trade didn’t work out, but the Mavericks were still able to bring Jordan to Dallas when he opted out of his contract with L.A. and signed a one year deal with the Mavs.

Again, Jordan said all the right things and sees genuinely happy to be a Mav. If he plays well, even the most bitter Mavs fan will appreciate what he brings to the team this season.

Reaction to a short stay?

It’s unusual in the NBA for a star player to come to a new team for only one year. So if Jordan leaves after one season, what will Mavs fans think of his time here?

Usually, if a talented player joins a team and leads them on a deep playoff run, they’ll be beloved forever in that city, even if they only stayed one season.

A non-basketball example is Vlad Guererro, who spent one season with the Texas Rangers, but that one season included an all-star appearance and a trip to the World Series. He was recently inducted into the Rangers’ Hall of Fame.

Another example is Caron Butler, who played in only 56 games for the Mavericks and missed half the championship season. But because he was on the squad that finally got the Mavericks a ring, he’s beloved in Dallas.

Unfortunately for DeAndre Jordan, there won’t be a deep playoff run for this Mavericks team. The best case scenario in Dallas is making the playoffs as an eight seed and not getting swept. There won’t be any memories of Jordan dunking someone’s face off in the Western Conference Finals, or a game-saving block in the NBA Finals.

No, all of his highlights will be from regular season games in January or catching some of the first alley-oops from Luka Doncic.

Do not expect too much

It would be hard for Jordan to earn a place in Mavs fans’ hearts in just one season under normal circumstances. Jordan is already behind the curve due to the Emoji Gate incident, so it’ll be even tougher for him.

No, Jordan will be remembered in the same way Mavs’ fans think of Monta Ellis, Deron Williams, and Chandler Parsons, a good player who made a pit stop in Dallas during his career during an unremarkable time in Mavericks history.

Sure, he’ll probably be the best of that bunch, but because he, like those other players, won’t be playing for anything real. He won’t garner the love that players like Dirk Nowitzki, Jason Terry, Shawn Bradley, Josh Howard, and Jason Kidd have here.

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And that’s okay. Sometimes basketball (and life) works that way. I’m glad to enjoy the one season of DeAndre Jordan we’ll have. Hopefully, Mavs fans do the same.