The Mavericks are one of the youngest teams in the NBA. This season will be a crucial one for their development, but should be a determining factor for the state of the team going forward.
The Dallas Mavericks are a popular pick to appear in the lottery in next year’s draft, with many expecting them to be in a similar draft spot as last year when they had the ninth selection. What those critics are missing is the true state of the roster and where the Mavericks actually are in the course of their rebuild.
The Mavericks are not a competitive team in the Western Conference quite yet. However, they have one of the most attractive young rosters in the NBA starting with their newest arrival, Dennis Smith Jr. The Mavs were disciplined in free agency and in the trade market this past offseason, not looking to disrupt their talented young core at all.
Dennis Smith Jr., Harrison Barnes, Nerlens Noel, Yogi Ferrell, and Seth Curry is a better team than most realize. The Mavs are solid on the defensive end, with one of the best rim protectors in the game as well as several talented perimeter defenders on the wing.
If the Mavericks stay healthy, focused, and develop properly, this could be a dazzling season for one of the youngest teams in the NBA. Hopefuls like Dorian Finney-Smith and Yogi Ferrell will be crucial for the team this coming year as the Mavs look to sneak into the bottom of the Western Conference playoffs.
While Dallas may not make too much noise in the actual postseason, there is nothing stopping this team from making a surprise appearance in the playoffs. Harrison Barnes is still there as a 20 points per game scorer, while Dennis Smith Jr. and others are there to keep up their improvements and make the Mavericks one of the most intriguing teams to keep an eye on this coming season.
Lastly, Rick Carlisle is another determinant in this whole equation. Carlisle is still revered as one of the best coaches in the NBA, and this year will prove his worth. While lacking in experience with coaching a team with this much youth, Carlisle will once again get the best out of every one of his players and push the team far beyond what is expected out of them from the media.
The Mavericks are overachievers every year. But this year will be the best example of that yet. With veterans Dirk Nowitzki, Wesley Matthews, Devin Harris, and J.J. Barea helping plug the holes, the Mavericks will build, off of their 33-win season from a year ago, and finish at or above .500.