The Dallas Mavericks are entering this offseason with pressure to improve their roster.
They must keep Luka Doncic happy and build a team around him that can compete for a title. One way to add talent is through the 2023 NBA Draft.
Dallas holds the 10th pick in this year's draft, and they have multiple holes in their roster that they must address.
How the Mavericks can land center of the future through the 2023 NBA Draft
They need defensive wings, another ball handler, and most importantly, a starting center. They can't refuse to upgrade at this position like in past offseasons. Dallas must find a starting center that can protect the rim effectively and rebound at a high rate.
Dereck Lively II could be that guy.
The 7'1 center averaged 5.2 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 2.4 blocks per game as a freshman at Duke, where showcased his ability to anchor a defense. This also came on just 20.6 minutes per game.
Lively II was basically just a rim runner on offense, but a new video has surfaced that could cause him to rise up draft boards.
Swish Cultures posted a video on Twitter from Lively II's Klutch Pro Day that featured him draining 14 corner three's in a row. This proves that Lively II is a capable shooter that never got his chance at Duke. The video also showed him knocking down some jumpers in the pick-and-pop.
Until this point, shooting was Lively II's biggest knock. He went 2-13 from three last season and wasn't utilized in the offense. This video is a game-changer for Lively II as it proves that he is more than a rim runner.
Dallas needs this type of center as their offense relies heavily on the pick and roll, and his shooting on top of his defense and rebounding could make him irresistible for Nico Harrison and company. Dallas could shock everyone and select Lively II at 10, or they could trade back and select him later in the first round.
This would give Dallas another young player to build around alongside Doncic, Jaden Hardy, and Josh Green. Dallas hasn't drafted a center since 2016, and this move would allow them to focus their cap space on adding wing depth this summer.
Stay tuned to see who Dallas selects in the 2023 NBA Draft or if they'll trade the pick away. Regardless of what happens with the pick, they will be using it to gain an asset in some way. This summer is crucial for the Mavericks, so you won't want to miss any news surrounding the team.