The Dallas Mavericks would shoot themselves in the foot next season if they were to miss the playoffs yet again. After missing the playoffs and NBA play-in tournament by a thin margin last year, Dallas came under fire for a late-season decision to rest players in an attempt to retain their top-10 protected pick that they owed to the New York Knicks.
The vibes in Dallas have been mended for the time being after a successful off-season by General Manager Nico Harrison and the rest of the Mavs' brain trust, but there are still plenty of scenarios that could cause Dallas to miss the playoffs next year after many Western Conference teams loaded up on talent this offseason.
Here are three reasons that could cause the Mavericks to miss the playoffs this upcoming season.
3. The Dallas Mavericks won't have enough continuity next season
Rarely do teams ever fully come together in their first season after a drastic roster overhaul. Dallas lies in that precarious position this upcoming season as they will attempt to make the playoffs despite nine out of their 15 players that they started the 2022-23 season with not being retained by the team heading into training camp this fall.
Continuity is one of the most underrated factors in determining how successful a team could potentially be heading into the season. The Minnesota Timberwolves for instance, narrowly made the playoffs last year after being penciled in by most talking heads as one of the better teams in the Western Conference before the season kicked off.
Through injuries and new players not gelling as instantly or as seamlessly as they expected, the Timberwolves were bounced out early in the first round by the eventual champion Denver Nuggets. Minnesota had to win a play-in game against the Oklahoma City Thunder to even make the playoffs in the first place.
For context, the Timberwolves did have a flurry of locker room issues throughout the season, but you never know how different players will react in a new environment. Dallas could be forced into a tough situation if certain players aren’t happy with their role, playing time, or even another teammate.
Luckily for Dallas, they brought in a good locker room guy this past off-season. Grant Williams is on the NBPA committee and is a well-respected and educated voice within the NBA world. There’s been virtually no history of any prominent off-court or locker room issues between the other Mavericks that have been brought in this off-season, which is promising.
However, chemistry isn’t guaranteed whatsoever within the first season of a roster overhaul, and Dallas will need to translate their talent on paper into wins before questions over their lack of continuity subside.