Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic is not going anywhere this offseason. The franchise fears that the 24-year-old superstar might request a trade if things do not improve around him, but Doncic made it clear that he will be back next season.
The Mavericks late season collapse which forced them to miss the playoffs coupled with Luka’s unhappiness down the stretch has created plenty of rumors. The Utah Jazz quickly emerged as a bidder in the potential sweepstakes. Dallas would set a ridiculously high price for the 24-year-old superstar, and it would be more than most teams could pay.
The Jazz have a ton of tradeable assets after dealing Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell, and there were fresh rumors (subscription required) of their interest in Doncic from the Salt Lake Tribune’s Andy Larsen. The Jazz want Luka badly, but they should keep dreaming about acquiring him because it won’t happen.
Utah Jazz continue to dream of Luka Doncic trade but are not favorites if it happens
The Jazz have nine incoming first-round picks plus their own, which is the most in the league, but Dallas will not just want just draft choices. Trading for Luka alone would make Utah a playoff contender, and their selections from Minnesota and Cleveland are not top-tier because they both project to be in the playoffs as well.
The Jazz could throw Lauri Markkanen in the trade, but the Dallas Mavericks would likely look for a better top-end piece to build around if they are dealing Luka Doncic. Fans know that Danny Ainge is one of the league’s best in trade negotiations, but that is bad when dealing for a superstar. Would Trader Danny be willing to give up everything to land Luka?
Beyond that, the Jazz would not be the favorite to land Doncic if he hit the trade market. The Thunder, Pelicans, and Knicks all have massive draft hauls to offer. Oklahoma City has young stars galore they could throw into the deal, and New Orleans could offer Zion Williamson or Brandon Ingram for number 77.
The Mavericks are going to want the face of their franchise and multiple picks in return. They tried to acquire Lauri Markkanen from Cleveland, but could not get a deal done. Would they be eager to target him again in a Luka Doncic trade? Expect the Mavericks to want someone who can handle the ball and create more offense back for their 24-year-old superstar.
A Luka Doncic trade will have to wait until at least the summer of 2024, which gives the Dallas Mavericks one year to get things right around him. Can they make it happen? Stay tuned to find out, but do not expect to see him headed to Utah either way.