Theo Pinson on Mavericks adding Kyrie Irving, losing Spencer Dinwiddie and Dorian Finney-Smith
The Dallas Mavericks made a blockbuster trade just four days before the deadline as they sent Dorian Finney-Smith, Spencer Dinwiddie, and three draft picks to the Brooklyn Nets for Kyrie Irving and Markieff Morris. It was a move that finally landed the Mavs a second star next to Luka Doncic.
This move came with the approval of Doncic, and it reunited Irving and Mavericks' guard Theo Pinson, who were teammates in Brooklyn for one season. Now, they have the chance to chase a ring this season for the Mavericks.
On Pinson’s most recent episode of his podcast Run Your Race, he talks about the new-look Mavericks with the addition of Kyrie Irving, and what it was like when the trade went down.
Pinson on playing with Kyrie Irving and the atmosphere in Dallas
"It’s electric bro. Like it’s electric. It’s a presence that we needed. It’s a presence that’s built confidence teamwide. When you bring that type of talent onto your team, it’s scary."
Why Theo Pinson thinks the move was great for Kyrie Irving
"I know Kai. I know everything that he’s been through, going from Brooklyn to here now. Like he just wants peace, bro. You can just tell he’s in a place where he is just happy and in a good place because of a fresh start. He’s not dealing with all of that type of stuff off the court. He’s just free and happy. He’s got familiar faces with me, Nico (Harrison), J-Kidd who he’s looked up to his whole life."
Irving grew up in West Orange, New Jersey, and grew up watching the New Jersey Nets and Jason Kidd. Some of Kidd’s best years as a player came when he played in New Jersey as he was the MVP runner-up in 2002 and led the Nets to their first-ever NBA Finals appearance.
Irving’s relationship with Mavericks GM Nico Harrison goes all the way back to 2011, the year that Irving signed with Nike. Harrison worked for Nike for over 20 years and has connections with players across the NBA.
Pinson on the Suns trading for Kevin Durant in response to the Mavericks' Kyrie Irving trade
"There’s no chance that the front office and coaching staff from Phoenix did not watch that Clipper game. There’s no way that they see that and be like alright bro. They might not have even had to watch the game … They were already struggling with just Luka, you know what I’m saying. He was causing so many problems."
The “Clipper game” that Pinson is referring to was Irving’s first game with the Mavericks on February 8, just four days after he was traded to Dallas. In that game, Irving finished with 24 points and led the Mavericks to a 110-104 win over the Los Angeles Clippers.
Pinson is alluding to the Suns being worried after watching that game because of what happened last year in the playoffs. The Mavericks defeated the Suns in seven games and overcame a 2-0 series deficit. In that series, Doncic averaged over 32 points and gave the Suns problems defensively all series long.
Theo Pinson on the Mavericks losing Spencer Dinwiddie and Dorian Finney-Smith
"That’s what is tough about this thing. Everyone knows that Spencer Dinwiddie is my guy. Doe is my guy too but me and Spencer are a little tighter. We played together in Brooklyn too. Spencer is my guy. And when I saw everything go down and I knew the Brooklyn thing might happen because they were talking about it or whatever. No way Brooklyn wasn’t going to take a point guard back if we were trading for Kai… once it happened it was crazy. Kai is my dude and Spencer is my guy too… It happened and we were supposed to get on a bus in 40 minutes."
Pinson noted that Dinwiddie was one of the first people that he saw after the trade went down. Theo gave him some encouraging words before getting on a bus with his teammates. The Mavericks played the Warriors the day before and were leaving to go to Utah.
The Mavericks acquired Dinwiddie at last year’s trade deadline and quickly carved out a big role within the team. Dinwiddie averaged 17.7 points per game this season with the Mavericks and had five games with 20 points or more in the playoffs last season.