Dallas Mavericks: Concern rises around Kristaps Porzingis’ lingering knee issues

It’s not a great sign that Dallas Mavericks forward Kristaps Porzingis is still dealing with lingering knee issues

One of the most prolific trades made last season involved the exchange of Kristaps Porzingis going to the Dallas Mavericks to join budding superstar and franchise centerpiece Luka Doncic.

The uniting of two European players of this caliber on the same team was giving everyone flashbacks of the Dirk Nowitzki era in Dallas, except this time with an even better point guard, if we should call Luka that.

New York Knicks fans were befuddled when the trade occurred and ultimately confused as to what the franchise was trying to achieve by moving such a young asset who had such a high ceiling. We all know the Knicks were never going to sign any of the league’s top free agents, and allocating a max contract to a young Porzingis to pair him with some other young pieces wouldn’t be a bad idea at all.

Nevertheless, the trade went down, and Dallas fans rejoiced. Though KP did miss the remainder of the season to recover from his knee injury, the onus was undoubtedly on how bright the future looked for the Mavericks following this trade.

The actual result though has been…questionable, to put it nicely. Kristaps hasn’t exactly been what you’d call a disappointment this season, as he is averaging 17 points, nine rebounds and two blocks per game when he plays. It’s just that, we all know he’s capable of putting up more points than that. Dallas is a very deep team and this is their first year together, but while there are several potential reasons for the slow start, none of those can account for his injury concerns.

Having already played 31 games this year and dealt with lingering knee issues, fans can’t help but be concerned about the health and ultimately future of their unicorn. Kristaps has now missed almost three weeks with this issue, and while it was at first a minor concern, it’s seemingly becoming more apparent that it is a chronic issue for him.

[via Dallas Morning News]

“It felt great yesterday. I had a solid workout, 25 or 30 minutes. Felt good. Didn’t feel any sharp pain or anything like that. And today I kind of felt it a little bit when I started warming up. I felt it more and more and I told the medical staff.”

The injury seems rather vague to us as he’s simply labeled to be out with “knee soreness” so, from our perspective, we’re left in the dark a bit.

“I was so hyped today and yesterday,” Porzingis said. “I wanted to play so bad. It is what it is. These things happen and we’ve got to think of the long-term. And I’ll be fine.”

It may very well be a minor issue that resolves itself with proper rest and a macro perspective on it, but taking into consideration his history, we can’t help but be concerned.

The Mavericks have remained in a good position with KP out, going 5-4 without him under the leadership of Luka Doncic. The team is well represented on the depth chart and should be prepared for times like this with a player as special as Kristaps who also happens to be 7-foot-3 and slender.

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With guys like Tim Hardaway Jr., Seth Curry, Delon Wright, JJ Barea, Jalen Brunson, Maxi Kleber, and Dwight Powell all being competent rotation pieces, the Mavs should be able to keep well above water in the meantime. It is, however, unrealistic to expect them to maintain or fight for that top three seeding they had earlier this year, and we should expect to see them in the bottom half of the Western Conference.

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