After the Dallas Mavericks' recent loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves, the Mavericks are now the sixth seed in the Western Conference with a record of 18-14. It's been well documented how haunted Dallas has been with injuries recently, as Dallas was without their two best players last night against Minnesota.
Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving are poised to return to the lineup soon, but the month of December has done a much greater job of showing the Mavericks flaws compared to any other stretch this season as Dallas has gone 7-8 through the month.
It's becoming increasingly clear that Dallas may make a move ahead of the upcoming trade deadline on February 8, but what sort of areas should the Mavericks seek to address? Dallas' defensive woes have been at the forefront of their issues as they currently rank 22nd in defensive rating in the NBA, but the absence of Kyrie Irving during elongated stretches could warrant Dallas looking for another star offensive player.
Rumors: 76ers star forward receiving trade interest, are Mavericks involved?
With trade rumors flooding the rumor mill, NBA insider Shams Charania had some intriguing things to say last Thursday on FanDuel TV's "Run it Back" regarding 76ers forward Tobias Harris.
"A lot of teams are keeping an eye on him and seeing what exactly happens with him. The Sixers want to keep him around, they know how important he is."- Shams Charania
It's unclear whether the Mavericks are one of the teams monitoring Harris, but that's not to say that Harris wouldn't be a good fit in Dallas. Harris is boasting averages of 17.1 points and 6.1 rebounds per game this year, and he doesn't look like he's lost too much gas despite turning 31 years old over the summer.
Harris would be delegated fewer ball-handling responsibilities if he was in Dallas alongside Kyrie Irving and Luka Doncic, but his field goal attempts may actually rise. Harris is great at playing out of the post as an isolation scorer and Doncic would hunt mismatches for Harris to exploit if he was in Dallas. Harris is also an above-average defender and would provide a needed jolt of consistent spot-up shooting and rebounding if he was in the Mavs' starting five.
Harris is in the last year of a five-year, $180 million contract signed in 2019, so inevitably many teams across the league would like to trade for his $39.3 million expiring contract as a means to have an abudance of cap space ahead of this upcoming free agency. That being said, it seems like Philadelphia is reluctant to move Harris unless he is the centripetal piece that brings them back a third star, so we'll see if Dallas even has the pieces to facilitate a deal.
Harris would fit great in Dallas but he doesn't necessarily fit Doncic's timeline and 76ers General Manager Daryl Morey seems like he's commanding a hefty asking price for Harris, so only time will tell to see how the situation plays out. Nonetheless, we'll have you covered with the latest news and rumors ahead of the trade deadline for the Dallas Mavericks, so stay tuned.