Mavericks trade deadline grades: Kyrie Irving blockbuster but quiet deadline day

Dallas Mavericks, Kyrie Irving
Dallas Mavericks, Kyrie Irving / Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports
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Did Dallas Mavericks make mistake by staying quiet on trade deadline day?

The Mavs had questions following the Kyrie Irving trade. It was clear that their offense would be elite, but can Dallas get enough stops on the defensive end of the floor? They were 24th in defensive rating before trading their best perimeter defender to Brooklyn. The Mavericks also need another wing and a third playmaker.

Rumors were flying that Dallas was not done after the trade, but they were quiet over the final four days. The Mavericks had conversations about trading Tim Hardaway Jr., Christian Wood, JaVale McGee, and others. Fans will never know how close they came to making a move, but it did not happen. Instead, the Mavs watched multiple Western Conference contenders improve their rosters as they stood pat.

Dallas only had one first-round draft pick and one second-round draft pick available to trade after the Irving deal, and they had zero interest in letting Josh Green or Jaden Hardy go. Their limited assets played a key role in the Mavericks not finding a deal, but they took a massive gamble trading for Kyrie Irving. The Mavs should have stayed aggressive and traded for a 3-and-D wing to help round out their roster.

The Dallas Mavericks are left with multiple questions about their roster and free agency is the only avenue to improve it before the postseason. They plan to be aggressive in the buyout market, but that means beating the other contenders. The Mavs have never had much luck in that area.