The NBA Trade Deadline is fast approaching, and teams are making calls around the clock to acquire new pieces to either make a strong push towards the postseason, or salvage what would otherwise be a mediocre year.
The Dallas Mavericks, who currently sit 11th in the Western Conference with a record of 22-29 (6.5 games out of the eighth and final playoff spot), are one of those teams who could use some new blood, as their current roster simply won’t cut it if they hope to continue their 13-year postseason appearance streak.
Mavs, I'm told, do have interest in Brandon Jennings and will be in mix for him if Bucks opt to make RFA-to-be available b4 Feb. 21 deadline
— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) February 13, 2013
Brandon will become a restricted free-agent this season after failing to come to terms with the Bucks on a multi-year deal.
RealGM.com is reporting that Jennings has “irreconcilable differences” with the franchise, and would prefer to be moved to a larger market.
Milwaukee has the right to match any offer that comes his way during the offseason. The team currently has $49 million in salary commitments for next season.
Dallas made a run at Deron Williams this past summer, but were unable to lure him away from the Brooklyn Nets. Instead, the Mavericks wound up with guard Darren Collison from the Indiana Pacers, who has underachieved this season.
Through 50 games, Brandon Jennings is averaging 18.5 points, 6.1 assists and 1.9 steals.
A starting backcourt of Jennings and O.J Mayo has a world of potential as a one-two punch on offense. His 1.9 steals a game would be a huge asset to a Mavericks team which ranks 28th in total defense.
However, I feel the shortcomings of Jennings overall game outweigh the good, which makes me wonder how desperate Dallas really is to make the playoffs this year.
Jennings is a 39.3% shooter…….for his entire career. Consider the fact that he takes upwards of 16 shots a game, and that shooting percentage looks even worse because of it.
His 2.27 assist-to-turnover ratio also ranks in the bottom-half of the league of point guards averaging at least 30 minutes a game.
He’s also a terrible one-on-one defender on the perimeter. Sure, his steal numbers aren’t bad, but his 6’1, 169 pound frame makes it easy for larger guards to take advantage of that matchup. Playing alongside another awful defender in Monta Ellis hasn’t exactly shined a positive light on Brandon in that department either.
Considering the amount of money Jennings will more than likely seek this summer, I don’t feel the investment this season and beyond would benefit the Mavericks or make their hopes of making the playoffs any better than they already are.
Desperate times call for desperate measures, but if I were Mark Cuban and Mavericks management, I would stay clear of this potential move and find some help elsewhere.