The Smoking Cuban

Mavericks: Does it matter if Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis are close?

Dallas Mavericks Luka Doncic Kristaps Porzingis Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
Dallas Mavericks Luka Doncic Kristaps Porzingis Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
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Dallas Mavericks
Dallas Mavericks Kristaps Porzingis Luka Doncic Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Dallas Mavericks stars Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis would not be alone

I am not saying there is a rift between the two stars. Brad Townsend wrote a fantastic piece (subscription required) on the topic on April 9. He noted that the dynamic between the two current duo does not rival that of Jason Kidd and Jim Jackson in 1996. That resulted in both players being traded by Feb. 1997.

Doncic and Porzingis would not be the first two NBA stars on the same team that were not close. There are have been far worse relationships.

Utah Jazz stars Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell had a public spat just as the NBA shut down in March 2020. Do not look now, but the Jazz have the best record in the league this season with both stars still on the roster.

One of the league’s most famous duo feuds was Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal. They were teammates in Los Angeles from 1996 to 2004. Shaq and Kobe won three championships together and made four trips to the NBA Finals, but the two were not close off the court. O’Neal was traded to the Miami Heat in 2004 in part because of the strained relationship between the two Hall of Famers.

Next: Can still win

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