5 questions Dallas Mavericks must answer after the All-Star break

Tyler Watts
Dallas Mavericks, Kyrie Irving, Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks, Kyrie Irving, Luka Doncic / Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports
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The Dallas Mavericks shook things up with a blockbuster trade for Kyrie Irving just days before the deadline. They wanted to find a co-star for Luka Doncic, and the front office took a swing when they got the chance. Irving is an eight-time All-Star and one of the most talented ball handlers in the league.

The trade left the Mavericks with plenty of questions to answer. Fans have only seen two games with Doncic and Irving playing together. Kyrie played in two contests that Luka missed with a heel injury, and the 30-year-old point guard sat out the final game before the All-Star break with a stiff back. The two superstars are still figuring things out, but the early returns are positive.

What questions should the Mavs be looking to answer after the All-Star break? They want to make the playoffs and go on another deep run. To do that, they need to figure out these five things.

What role does Christian Wood play for the Dallas Mavericks after the All-Star break?

Wood started the season as the team’s sixth man and leading scorer off the bench. He averaged 17.2 points and 7.8 rebounds in 26.3 minutes per game over his first 26 contests.

Then, head coach Jason Kidd inserted him into the starting five for 16 straight games where he averaged 20.3 points, 9.4 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 2.4 blocks each night. Wood looked incredible, but a wrist injury put him on the shelf for just over two weeks.

During his absence, Dallas traded for Kyrie Irving. It cost them their best perimeter defender in Dorian Finney-Smith, and coach Kidd has shifted to playing more small ball. Wood returned with six games remaining before the All-Star break, and he averaged just 18.3 minutes per game over that stretch.

Where does the 27-year-old fit in on the new-look Mavericks? Will C-Wood return to his sixth-man role after the All-Star break? Is he more of a backup center that plays 15 to 25 minutes per game at this point? The Mavs want to win, so they must decide how Wood helps them do that. His minutes are trending down, but things can change quickly in NBA rotations, and coach Kidd does not have his set just yet.