Dallas Mavericks: Should Jabari Parker be a trade target?

Chicago Bulls forward Jabari Parker (2) guards Dallas Mavericks forward Harrison Barnes (40) at the United Center in Chicago on November 12, 2018. (Armando L. Sanchez/Chicago Tribune/TNS via Getty Images)
Chicago Bulls forward Jabari Parker (2) guards Dallas Mavericks forward Harrison Barnes (40) at the United Center in Chicago on November 12, 2018. (Armando L. Sanchez/Chicago Tribune/TNS via Getty Images) /

The Dallas Mavericks always like mixing it up in the trade market from year to year. With word coming from the Chicago Bulls that Jabari Parker is out of the rotation, should the Mavs look into a trade option?

When the 2014 NBA Draft was approaching, the debate seemed to be pretty clearly set on two players that would be battling it out for the first overall pick. Kansas University’s Andrew Wiggins was the freak athlete that was turning heads around the country, while Duke’s Jabari Parker appeared to be the best basketball player available.

We will continue to gloss over the fact that Joel Embiid was taken 3rd and Nikola Jokic was taken 41st and instead talk about the importance of how the first two picks have been nowhere near as good. That doesn’t change the fact that both players came into the league with very impressive abilities and skillsets.

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Wiggins stepped into the league as an important role player for the Minnesota Timberwolves, whereas Jabari suffered multiple setbacks with injuries during his first few seasons. The Bucks grew tired of waiting for him to pan out so they let him walk in the summer. Chicago signed him to a big 2-year/$40 million deal, but put a team option on year two. Now they don’t even want to play him.

Here are some of the risks and rewards that would come with trading for a guy like Jabari.


Parker is an incredibly talented basketball player. It doesn’t take much work to Google Parker and see what he was able to do in high school and college. We all know of cases where extremely talented players just can’t cut it in the league, but it is rare to hear a team upset that they didn’t give that guy a shot at being great.

Parker comes with a trial deal that won’t hurt the team any. Sure, the rest of his $20 million for this year is kind of steep, but if the right trade is made, that would be a non-factor. The team would then get the rest of the year to decide if they want to pick up his team option for the 2019-20 season.


The most notable risk is definitely his injury history. Parker has had severe injuries during his very short NBA career, which can cause a lot of lingering issues for a player. Injuries will always play a big part on the willingness of teams to consider signing a player to a deal. It is a little different with a trade, but the fact remains.

The other thing to consider is that two teams have already tried to find success with this player, but he continues to fall out of favor with the coaches. In Milwaukee, Parker was a regular starter during his first three seasons before losing favor with the coach. He went to Chicago in a seemingly decent situation, only to fall out of the rotation again.

Trade Possibility

The one trade that I could see the Dallas Mavericks potentially considering would be a swap for Wesley Matthews and Parker. This trade wouldn’t make any sense for Chicago, who is looking for young players to grow the team, not veteran guys to help them over the edge.

The trade wouldn’t make much sense for Dallas either unless they see a way to get into Jabari’s untapped potential. Parker would make the Mavs a worse defensive team and a worse shooting team quickly. If he could get into his skillset, however, it would make more sense as to why Dallas would even be interested.

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The Mavs should definitely not pursue this trade opportunity in any way. Jabari comes with too many concerns and too much baggage for it to be worth it to the Mavs. Even if he did prove to be a solid piece, he would want more money than the Mavs would be willing to spend. It is a lose-lose situation and I hope the Mavericks stay away from it.