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Where the Mavericks went wrong in the 2021 offseason: Can they fix it?

Dallas Mavericks, Jalen Brunson, Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks, Jalen Brunson, Luka Doncic / Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
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Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic / Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

Dallas Mavericks do not want to limit Luka Doncic but need another playmaker

Doncic is one of the best ball-handlers in the league. He led the Mavs to the top offensive rating in NBA history in 2020 before the record was broken last season. Dallas wants the ball in his hands as they watch him break down the defense.

The law of diminishing returns comes into play, though. Luka only has so much energy, and asking him to create every play takes a lot. He wears down in the fourth quarter because no player can handle the workload being thrust onto his shoulders. A little less Doncic means a fully energized version during crunch time.

The Mavericks were hoping Jalen Brunson would step up to be the team’s secondary playmaker. He has been outstanding this season, but JB is an undersized guard. If the Mavs close games with Brunson, that puts him on the floor with Luka and Tim Hardaway Jr. and creates some defensive issues. Dallas needs a bit more size.

Also, two players that can create is not enough in the pace and space NBA. Look around the league, most title contenders have at least three if not four or five players that can handle the ball and run offense. The Dallas Mavericks need to add another playmaker before the trade deadline.