Why trading for a star player could make the Dallas Mavericks worse

Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic, Reggie Bullock
Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic, Reggie Bullock / Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
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Dallas Mavericks will have to overpay for a star because no superstars are available

The number of sellers on the trade market is tiny right now. The play-in tournament gives two more teams postseason games, and it allows teams to stay in contention longer. Add in the jam-packed standings in the Western Conference, and the number of confirmed sellers sits at three.

Other teams will join that list before Feb. 9, but no superstar player will be available. The market will lack a Kevin Durant or Donovan Mitchell. Zach LaVine, Fred VanVleet, OG Anunoby, and D’Angelo Russell are expected to be the best names available. All are potential All-Stars, but none are the best player on a contending team.

The best available will command a massive price because there are so many more buyers than sellers. Lack of supply always increases prices, so the Mavericks will have to overpay to land one of the two or three best players available at the trade deadline.

In the offseason, more trades are out there because teams can expand their rosters to 20 players and create more flexibility by making other moves. Superstars usually ask out in the offseason, which also drives down the price of star players.

Overpaying for a star when the Dallas Mavericks' trade assets are already limited will give them an unbalanced roster for the remainder of the season and potentially make them worse in the short term.