Dallas Mavericks projected to make playoffs based on real plus-minus

Dallas Mavericks Kristaps Porzingis Luka Doncic Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Bart Young/NBAE via Getty Images)
Dallas Mavericks Kristaps Porzingis Luka Doncic Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Bart Young/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The Dallas Mavericks have been projected to finish anywhere from 6th to 13th in the West, with few feeling confident leaving them out of the playoffs and even fewer feeling good about putting them in. What does ESPN think will happen?

The NBA world is full of predictions right now with everyone anxiously waiting for the season to start. Among the teams people are eager to see is the Dallas Mavericks, led by Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis. The Mavs have been a tough team to predict this year with some putting them in playoff contention while others think they will still be a lottery team.

A recent piece published by ESPN (subscription required) went through every NBA teams projected win-loss record based on real plus-minus projections. Despite a less than ideal offseason by most standards, the Mavs took a huge jump in the RPM-based projections from last year.

This jump is obviously due in large part to the addition of Kristaps Porzingis, but it goes deeper than that, too. In fact, the depth it goes to starts with the Mavs depth. A big part of the reason the Mavs are projected to make a jump is because they have so many solid role players coming off the bench. This is a common approach we have seen from the Mavs in years past as well.

The article has the Mavericks coming in at 7th in the West, a scenario that could very well happen, but has some projections that seem slightly less realistic. For one, the Mavs are ahead of the Trail Blazers, who are ranked at 8th despite back-to-back 49+ win seasons.

The real plus-minus stat is a good stat to be aware of and can track things well, but it certainly is not the end-all stat that will give you the exact playoff results, especially when using projections and predictions.

Even still, Mavs fans should be excited to see this as a possibility that is being put out there. Many people have given up on the Mavs chances to make it to the playoffs next year, but there is good reason to believe they will be right there in the mix. The Mavs may not have a top team in the league, but they could very easily do some real damage.

Dallas will get a real shot to prove their doubters wrong and their believers right this season. If KP and Luka can both stay healthy, this is a truly dangerous team for whoever they may come across through the season and into the playoffs.

Injury updates on Porzingis, Barea and Hardaway Jr.. Next

The Mavs will tip-off their season on Wednesday, October 23rd against the Washington Wizards. Until then, the rumors and projections will have to be our only source of hope and optimism for the Mavericks.