The Dallas Mavericks have gone 9-16 since acquiring veteran guard Kyrie Irving.
However, despite failing to meet expectations, the Mavs plan to re-sign the eight-time All-Star in free agency (per Bleacher Report’s Chris Haynes).
Irving, now playing on his fourth team, is eligible for a contract extension this offseason. Given the controversy that surrounds the star, it’s possible that he prioritizes his financial security moving forward.
Nonetheless, Haynes reports that Irving plans to “allow his future to be decided in free agency.”
With that said, any number of teams could come calling for Kyrie and the Mavs would be at his mercy.
Still, the Mavs don’t believe that their “shortcomings” are the fault of Kyrie. So, it makes sense for them to try and retain the talented playmaker.
Few players in the league are capable of scoring on his level. Even fewer excel when it comes to creating space and scoring creatively.
Irving, should he truly mesh with the Luka Doncic, would create the type of duo other teams would aspire to have.
They already have been impressive offensively.
Irving, for his part, is averaging 26.7 points and 5.9 assists on what would be a career-high 63.2 true shooting percentage since joining the Mavs.
The problem is on the other end of the ball though.
In acquiring Irving, the Mavs traded their best perimeter defender, Dorian Finney-Smith.
Neither Irving nor Doncic are consistently reliable defenders, so their perimeter defense is getting exploited. Their frontcourt defense is getting exposed.
Consequently, this offseason “the Mavericks intend to surround [Luka] and—optimistically—Irving with versatile wing defenders and rim protectors to improve a defense that has been subpar.”
A smart plan that may be their best path moving forward.
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