Mavericks missed perfect opportunity to fix glaring hole with trade

Alex Caruso
Alex Caruso / Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

With the Dallas Mavericks' season ending in heartbreaking fashion in the NBA Finals to the Boston Celtics, the team and fans have shifted their focus to the offseason and what additions Dallas may need to make to improve. After losing in five games to the Celtics, many holes were exposed on the Mavericks' roster, including the need for a third ball handler.

While the Mavs have a lot to hold their head up high on after a season that saw plenty of positives, the progression of rookie center Dereck Lively II may be of the utmost importance for Dallas. Lively II became an integral piece for Dallas throughout the regular season, especially in their run to the Finals.

Still, no need is greater for Dallas than the addition of a third ball handler to take the load off of superstars Kyrie Irving and Luka Doncic. With Tim Hardaway Jr. and Jaden Hardy fading in and out of the Mavericks rotation throughout the season, the Mavericks may look to the trade market to meet their needs.

Mavericks missed perfect opportunity to fix glaring hole by trading for Alex Caruso

With offseason deals looming, the first of many trades broke the ice for fans and teams to start sounding the offseason alarms. The first trade to officially activate the offseason came early on Thursday evening when Chicago Bulls guard Alex Caruso was traded to the OKC Thunder in a blockbuster deal for Josh Giddey.

Not only is this a deal that directly affects Dallas in the way that a contending team got better, but Caruso was a potential candidate to fill a glaring hole on the roster. Caruso has become one of the best point-of-attack defenders in the league, all while being on a below-average Chicago squad for the past three seasons.

Caruso has made a living on the defensive end with his patent being in steals and making it hard for star players to get in their groove. Offensively, Caruso has vastly improved from his days as a Laker. Since being stuck on a bad Chicago team, Caruso has been asked to take a heavy offensive load, which has only made him a more enticing trade target.

Seeing Caruso get dealt for a relatively low price tag may be a tough pill to swallow for Mavs fans considering Giddey was being listed as a negative asset in his last season with the Thunder. However, Giddy still isn't a bad player, but Dallas could've had more to offer had they begun showing interest in Caruso.

It's no secret Dallas needs an upgrade at the guard position after they got exposed by the Celtics. Not only would Caruso have been the perfect candidate in Dallas to fill a huge positional need, but that's yet another target off the board that the Mavs can no longer get. There are still plenty of deals to be had that involve guards the Mavericks need, but Caruso may have been at the top of that list.

The Mavericks will need to make a splash quickly in the trade market if they wish to return to the Finals next season. For more updates on the Dallas Mavericks and their offseason moves, stay plugged in as we will have you covered.