The Dallas Mavericks have found their stride after an uneven start to the season. They have rebounded from 9-10 to sit fourth in the Western Conference on the morning of Jan. 13. Dallas has won nine of their last 12, despite missing multiple rotation players in every game. Superstar Luka Doncic has been otherworldly during that stretch, but the front office must get him more help if they want to be true title contenders.
The NBA’s Feb. 9 trade deadline is rapidly approaching and the rumor mill is just starting to heat up. Dallas has already been linked to multiple players, including Zach LaVine and Bojan Bogdanovic. The Mavs must make moves if they want to go on another deep playoff run, but what do they need?
Even when healthy, Dallas must upgrade their roster to become true title contenders. Their defense has slipped outside the top 20, and they are the worst rebounding team in the NBA right now, so here are three needs that the Mavericks must address before the 2023 trade deadline.
Dallas Maverick need before the 2023 trade deadline: 3. Center upgrade
The Mavs started Dwight Powell during last season’s run to the conference finals, but Maxi Kleber played the majority of the minutes at the five. It allowed Dallas to go small, space the floor, and have a more switchable defense, but it left them struggling to rebound and protect the rim. The front office added JaVale McGee and Christian Wood in the offseason to improve in those areas, but it has not worked out.
McGee was promised a starting role, but that lasted just seven games before he was played off the floor. The veteran big man has struggled in the Mavericks' defensive scheme, and he has completely fallen out of the rotation.
Christian Wood has been fantastic in Dallas, but he still struggles on defense. The block numbers have picked up since he moved into the starting lineup, but the Mavs still allow way too many easy buckets, and they rank dead last in rebounds per game.
The Dallas Mavericks need to acquire a center upgrade that can be their defensive anchor and improve their rebounding, especially with Maxi Kleber set to miss extended time., but that is far from the team’s lone need as the deadline approaches.