Mavericks set to meet with star point guard, elite defender at start of free agency

Dallas Mavericks v Atlanta Hawks
Dallas Mavericks v Atlanta Hawks / Kevin C. Cox/GettyImages

Free agency starts tonight at 5 p.m. CT and the Dallas Mavericks are a team looking to make the right moves return to contention.

Last season the Mavericks limped across the finish line as they tanked their final two games of the season and missed the playoffs. That was not their plan for the end of the season, and Dallas has to make sure that doesn't happen again to keep Luka Doncic happy.

They can't risk frustrating him, as he could eventually try to force his way out. There were rumors that he could request a trade if the Mavericks don't considerably improve. These reports were later shot down by Doncic, but it's still something to monitor as the Mavericks try to build around him.

Mavericks set to meet with star point guard, elite defender at start of free agency

The Mavericks tried to build around Doncic by trading for Kyrie Irving in February, but it didn't end up working out, as they plummeted in the standings and missed the playoffs. Dallas is reportedly set to meet with Irving on Friday evening, and Dallas needs to nail the meeting to give them a better chance of retaining the star point guard. Irving is expected to re-sign with Dallas, but he will want to be generously compensated.

Irving never gave any indication during the season that he wasn't interested in re-signing, and made it clear that he understood it wouldn't be an immediate fit. It would take some time. Irving even went to the extent of saying the trade was for the "long term."

Irving averaged 27 points, five rebounds, and six assists in the 20 games he played in Dallas. He and Doncic dominated on offense, but their defense struggled as they had to give up Dorian Finney-Smith to trade for him. The Mavericks would benefit most by adding wing defenders around them if they re-sign Irving.

Another guard reportedly set to meet with the Mavericks at the start of free agency is 2023 NBA Champion Bruce Brown. He was rumored as a guard that the Mavericks were going to pursue, and this meeting confirms that.

Brown was a crucial part of the Nuggets' NBA Finals run and averaged 12 points, four rebounds, 1.9 assists, and 1.1 steals per game during the playoffs. He is a lockdown perimeter defender and would fit great in Dallas next to Doncic and Irving. Brown can guard multiple positions and would allow Doncic and Irving to take easier matchups on defense.

Other than being a lockdown defender, Brown is also a reliable three-point shooter. He shot 35.8 percent from downtown last season and is a reliable catch-and-shoot option.

The Mavericks would be elated if they walk away with signing both Bruce Brown and Kyrie Irving at the start of free agency. It would allow them to re-sign their biggest priority in Irving and add a wing, another obvious priority.

Stay tuned to see if the Mavericks can land both Brown and Irving and what other moves they decide to make. It will be a news and rumor-filled offseason, and we'll have you covered.