How Paul Pierce would have changed the Mavericks in 2007

Tyler Watts
Dallas Mavericks Paul Pierce (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
Dallas Mavericks Paul Pierce (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images) /
3 of 4
Dallas Mavericks
Dallas Mavericks Paul Pierce (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /


Paul Pierce was an underrated defender during this stretch. He was always among the league leaders in steals averaging 1.7 per game from his rookie season to 2007. Pierce also grabbed 6.5 rebounds a night while playing on the wing.

The advanced metrics favored Pierce too. He averaged 3.6 defensive win shares per season from 1999 to 2007. That roughly places him in the top 50 in the NBA each year. He never made an All-Defensive team, but he could hold his own on the perimeter.

Must Read. 5 players Dallas could have drafted over the last 10 years

The Dallas Mavericks had an excellent defense in 2007. They finished fifth in the league in defensive rating. The Mavs had five players with 3.0 or more defensive win shares that season.

Playing Pierce, Terry, and Howard as the one through three would have improved Dallas’ defense. Adding in a prime Dirk at the four and Erick Dampier starting at center makes the Mavericks an elite team on this end of the floor too.

The Dallas Mavericks finished 67-15 in 2007, but adding Paul Pierce would have been a significant improvement to an already great team. Pierce would have helped Dallas most in the playoffs as fans likely remember their first round exit at the hands of the “We Believe” Warriors.

Next: Fit with Dirk