Grade the Trade: How the Dallas Mavericks could pull off a deal for Fred VanVleet

Dallas Mavericks, Fred VanVleet
Dallas Mavericks, Fred VanVleet / Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports
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The Dallas Mavericks would love to add another playmaker before the Feb. 9 trade deadline, but it won’t be easy. Jalen Brunson’s departure in free agency left Dallas one ball-handler short, and the Mavs front office could not find a capable replacement. The Mavericks are just 25-24 after 49 games, despite MVP-level play from Luka Doncic, and they must add reinforcements.

Dallas owes their 2023 first-round pick to the New York Knicks from the original Kristaps Porzingis trade. It is top ten protected, which limits the Mavericks to just two available first-round draft choices to trade. If the pick conveys this summer, they will have all their first-rounders available to move, and the Mavericks could chase a second star to play next to Luka Doncic.

The Raptors are struggling this season, and Fred VanVleet can become an unrestricted free agent in the offseason. Can the two sides work out an extension? If not, does Toronto trade the veteran point guard? Rumors suggest that VanVleet could become available, and the Mavs would be interested, but can they pull off a trade for the 28-year-old point guard?

Could the Dallas Mavericks add Fred VanVleet before the trade deadline?

Doug Smith of the Toronto Star went through the rumored value of all the potentially available Raptors where he noted that acquiring VanVleet would cost at minimum two young players on rookie contracts and at least one first-round pick. The Mavs had Josh Green and Jaden Hardy, but Hardy does not seem to fit in Toronto, so it would likely take Green plus two first-rounders from Dallas to join the VanVleet sweepstakes.

Dallas would love to acquire a veteran ball-handler, and getting a former All-Star and NBA champion in his prime is enticing. The Mavericks are not acquiring VanVleet without assurance they can sign him long-term. They do have the assets to make a competitive offer, but it may not be the winning bid. Here is what the deal could look like if Fred VanVleet heads to Dallas.