The Dallas Mavericks have recently signed four-time All-Star guard Kemba Walker. The 32-year-old is brought in to be Dallas’ much-needed third ball handler. He will be able to ease the load off Luka Doncic and Spencer Dinwiddie by running the second unit that desperately needs a spark offensively.
The Mavericks previously pursued the point guard during the 2019 offseason by clearing cap space, but Walker took his talents to the Boston Celtics. However, he isn’t the same All-Star caliber player he once was due to injuries. This move shows how the Mavs are stuck in this continuous cycle of signing All-Star caliber players past their prime years.
Dallas Mavericks free agent dealings with Deron Williams
Ten years ago, New Jersey (now Brooklyn) Nets superstar point guard Deron Williams was heavily pursued by the Dallas Mavericks during the 2012 offseason. Dallas offloaded key pieces from their 2011 championship roster, including Tyson Chandler, Caron Butler, and JJ Barea to create cap space to sign Williams. Instead, Williams chose to resign with the Nets, much to the Mavericks' dismay.
According to Williams, Mavericks owner Mark Cuban no-showed their meeting that offseason, which was the deciding factor for the guard.
Three seasons later, Williams would eventually sign with the Mavericks in the 2015 offseason, but he wasn’t the same caliber player. His stats and his overall play dropped tremendously, leading to his release two seasons later during the 2016-2017 season.
Alternately, if Williams signed with the Mavericks three years prior, the team may have once again become a title contender. Yet, his decision to not join the Mavericks set Dallas back years after blowing up their championship team for him.
Dallas Mavericks free agent dealings with DeAndre Jordan
Los Angeles Clippers star center DeAndre Jordan was a free agent during the 2015 offseason, the same offseason where the Mavericks would acquire Williams.
Jordan verbally committed to signing with the Mavericks, however, this news caught the attention of his teammates, and they convinced the center to re-sign with the Clippers. This would irate the Mavericks organization and fans as they heckled Jordan each time the Clippers played the Mavericks on the road.
Three years later, the All-Star center signed with the Mavericks during the 2018 offseason. He issued a public apology to Mark Cuban and Mavs nation for how he handled the controversial offseason years prior.
Although he was forgiven for his actions in 2015, his play while he was with the Mavericks was not. He proved not to be the dominant, athletic stud that once dominated the paint he was with the Clippers. He didn’t last a full season, as he was involved in the Kristaps Porzingis trade during the 2018-2019 season.
Kemba Walker's expectations differ from previous Dallas Mavericks signings
Kemba Walker has the potential to spark the Dallas Mavericks without having to take on high expectations, unlike Williams and Jordan. He’s expected to play about 20 to 25 minutes per game and get the Mavericks’ offense going, specifically when Doncic is on the bench.
It’ll be interesting to see him share the floor with Christian Wood. Hopefully, fans can watch those two commandeer the Mavericks' offense to new heights. He doesn’t have the expectations to make an immediate impact as he can gradually build chemistry with his new team over time. Nevertheless, the Mavericks front office and fans should be worried alike if history would, unfortunately, repeat itself.