The Dallas Mavericks are in danger of completely missing the postseason just one year after reaching the conference finals as this season has not gone as planned in any way. Luka Doncic has been spectacular, including leading the league in scoring for most of the year, and Dallas is going to finish with a losing record. The wheels came off down the stretch as nothing went right for the Mavs.
The problems started years ago, and they have all built to this moment. It was a minor failed trade, a massive failed trade, overpaying in free agency, letting a key piece depart with zero return, and so on. All those moves add up to making a desperation trade for Kyrie Irving and watching it blow up in your face because the team has nobody left to defend.
The Mavericks should be evaluating everything right now. From the top down, Dallas must make changes if they are going to build a title contender around Luka Doncic. First, the Mavs should be assessing the problems, and how much of the blame for the team’s struggles should be on owner Mark Cuban? Here are five mistakes he needs to learn from and implement solutions for moving forward.
Owner Mark Cuban deserves all the blame for Dallas Mavericks losing Jalen Brunson
The biggest negative of the Luka Doncic era in Dallas was letting Brunson walk in free agency and getting zero return. Contenders do not lose their second-best player without getting something back. They just do not let that happen.
To make matters worse, Brunson wanted to sign the four-year $55 million extension that he was eligible for before and during the 2021-2022 season. The Mavs could have JB on one of the best-value contracts in the league right now, but they wanted to maintain the flexibility to trade him if a superstar came along.
Cuban deserves all the blame for losing Jalen Brunson. He is the owner, and Brunson’s new contract would have come directly out of his checkbook. At any moment, the 64-year-old billionaire could have stepped in and offered JB the extension he wanted, but it never happened.
Owner Mark Cuban got no zero return for the Dallas Mavericks' second-best player, and the franchise is paying dearly for that at this moment, but it was not the first time that he misevaluated his own talent.