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Why Dallas Mavericks should be watching OKC Thunder closely during training camp

Dallas Mavericks, Ty Jerome, Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks, Ty Jerome, Luka Doncic / Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
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Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic / Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

Why the Dallas Mavericks should jump at the chance to acquire young talent from Thunder

The Mavs have just 14 players under contract and only one of their two-way spots filled. They have been searching for trades, and Dallas wants to remain flexible if an unexpected opportunity arises.

Luka Doncic’s max extension kicks in this season, and owner Mark Cuban is facing his first luxury tax payment since 2011. Teams are expecting the cap to spike with a new TV deal on the horizon, but if it does not, the Mavs could quickly become a repeater tax team as they attempt to build a title contender around Doncic.

Dallas needs young talent at the backend of their roster to keep their costs down and improve their chances of trading for a star player.

The Mavs and head coach Jason Kidd have a strong track record of developing talent. Dorian Finney-Smith and Maxi Kleber went from undrafted to key rotation pieces in Dallas. Kidd helped Giannis Antetokounmpo and Khris Middleton become All-Stars, and he just put the finishing touches on Jalen Brunson earning over $100 million from the Knicks.

The Mavericks traded back into the draft to land Jaden Hardy, and the Thunder could be looking to give away a young talent on a rookie contract before the regular season begins. Dallas should jump at the chance to try to develop that player.