Examining the 2023 doomsday scenario for the Dallas Mavericks

Dallas Mavericks, Kyrie Irving, Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks, Kyrie Irving, Luka Doncic / Ron Jenkins/GettyImages
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Kyrie Irving leaves Dallas Mavericks in free agency to team with cap space

Mavs fans know exactly what it is like to lose your second-best player with zero return. Jalen Brunson departed for New York last summer in free agency, and Dallas got nothing back. It is one of the many reasons that the Mavericks are in their current position.

Kyrie is an unrestricted free agent this summer, and the risk of him leaving is real. Rumors of him going to Los Angeles to team with LeBron James will persist until the eight-time All-Star makes his decision, but it is not just the Lakers. Irving could sign anywhere.

If Kyrie can find a team with cap space willing to give him a max contract, he might take it. Losing him for nothing would hurt worse than Brunson considering what the Mavericks just gave up to acquire him. Dallas traded their best defender, a starting guard, one first-round pick, and two second-round picks to acquire Irving in February. That is a hefty price to pay for a two-month rental that could bolt in free agency.

The Dallas Mavericks made a desperation trade for a second star, and it will be a massive talent drain on their roster if he leaves in free agency. Sadly, things could still get worse.