The Dallas Mavericks have now lost twice in a row against the lottery-bound Charlotte Hornets and fall further in the Western Conference standings earlier today. They were the 4th seed before the trade deadline but the Luka-Kyrie pairing has been a disappointment so far as they have gone 7-13 over their last 20 games.
During that span, Doncic and Kyrie both missed time due to injuries and the Mavs didn’t just have any defensive backbone since they traded away fan favorite and defensive stopper, Dorian Finney-Smith.
After reaching the Western Conference Finals last season, many pundits were convinced that the Mavs will take a major leap this season but the team struggled right out of the gate due to Brunson’s departure via free agency.
To make things worse, Doncic will miss their next game due to reaching the NBA’s technical fouls limit as he had obtained his 16th technical foul in the loss against the Hornets, which automatically grants a one-game suspension.
They are currently 11th in the West but could continue to slide further in the standings if they can’t even beat winnable games against under .500 teams.
This is not what Mark Cuban had envisioned for this team but even though the Mavs consistently traded for possible upgrades at the trade deadline in the past four years, they still haven’t found the right players to complement Doncic’s style of play.
This Dallas team is reminiscent of LeBron’s Cavs team early in his career – an otherworldly talent that has little team success. As Doncic stated that he is getting frustrated and losing happiness in the game, it’s not far-fetched to think that he might follow LeBron’s trajectory down the road and seek greener pastures.
There is no immediate solution to this Mavs team right now. They are hapless defensively and their supporting cast has been subpar throughout the season. To say that they are a disappointment is a huge understatement for this team. They are quickly becoming a disaster, and Mark Cuban should prepare for worst-case scenarios during the upcoming offseason.