The Dallas Mavericks were lucky to have added Kyrie Irving to their roster back in February of last season, but some of the ancillary benefits of adding Irving to the roster could very well pay dividends for the Mavericks this upcoming season.
Kyrie is one of the more well-liked and admired players in the NBA, and most of his former teammates thoroughly enjoyed playing with him. He has a slew of former great teammates, but not all of them are necessarily applicable to this list because there either haven't been any rumblings of them moving on from their incumbent teams, or they are in secure situations.
Kyrie does have plenty of realistic former teammates that the Mavericks could add via trade or free agency at some point over the next season or two though, and with Kyrie's pulling power, who knows if the Mavericks could potentially get involved in bringing one of his former teammates to Dallas.
Here are three former teammates of Kyrie Irving that the Mavericks could realistically target.
3. Royce O'Neale
Kyrie played with Royce O’Neale for only a little over half of a season, but the two seemed to click during their time in Brooklyn together.
Kyrie had this to say about O’Neale prior to the start of last season (via HoopsHype):
"Royce is one of those players that you want on your team because he’s had a lot of experience. He’s been through a lot of battles. He understands the nuances of the game and what it takes to win."- Kyrie Irving
Royce O’Neale is set to become an unrestricted free agent after this next season with the Brooklyn Nets. Expiring contracts are always potentially on the hot seat at or before the trade deadline for most teams, especially in the mid-tier salary range that O’Neale is set to make this upcoming season at $9.5 million. The Nets also have a surplus of 3-and-D wings, which would make it much more likely that they'd want to consolidate O'Neale for a guard or a center.
O'Neale, who just turned 30 in June, would bring another layer of veteran leadership to the Mavericks while also being able to still be a serviceable player off the bench.
The Mavericks would have an abundance of defense on the wing and at the point of attack if they were to add O'Neale, and adding a player in O'Neale, who has shot over 38 percent from three-point range in the last three consecutive seasons, would sure up any questions about the Mavericks' lack of shooting from the wing position.
O'Neale would give the Mavericks a lot of assurance on the wing, especially with questions over how well Olivier-Maxence Prosper and Derrick Jones Jr. can shoot from beyond the arc next season still unanswered. While the Mavericks need a rim protector more than a wing, they shouldn't shun the opportunity to add one of Kyrie's former teammates in O'Neale.