2. Dallas Mavericks
The Mavericks fall at number two in these rankings. However, Dallas may be more of a 1B rather than a solidified number two.
Of course, with only one team remaining, it can be figured out that the Memphis Grizzlies hold the No. 1 slot. But, with Grizzlies' star Ja Morant set to miss the opening 25 contests, the Mavericks are right behind Memphis in this ranking.
If not for the Mavericks' disappointing a season ago and the Grizzlies finishing with a top-5 record in the NBA, Dallas would likely be the highest-ranked Southwest team. But here are.
Dallas has done enough this offseason to dethrone the Grizzlies and conquer the division title. Nevertheless, the division title is won during the season, and not in the offseason. Thus, Dallas still has a lot to prove following last season's meltdown.
Incoming players are first-round draft picks Dereck Lively II and Olivier-Maxence Prosper, free agent additions Seth Curry, Dante Exum, and Derrick Jones Jr, and trade acquisitions Richaun Holmes and Grant Williams. Additionally, Kyrie Irving, Dwight Powell, and Markieff Morris are returning.
The outgoing cast is Davis Bertans, Reggie Bullock, Justin Holiday, Frank Ntilikina, Christian Wood, and recently, JaVale McGee as Dallas is planning to waive him if they can't find a trade partner.
Looking at the incoming and outgoing players, the talent and age difference is evident. Dallas has added young and defensive-minded pieces to surround Luka Doncic with a dependable supporting cast.
A season ago, the defense was a massive issue for the Mavericks. This offseason, multiple players have been put in place to alter the Mavs' defense for the better. Dallas has the potential to take over the Grizzlies' spot, but the on-court product has yet to be witnessed.