Mark Cuban: "Nobody wants to help Doncic like me"

The Dallas Mavericks owner talks about his star and the team's plans to go to market. "We need a second scorer," he says.


Dallas Mavericks is at a turning point. In one of those that, although it seems exaggerated, can define the future of a good string of years. There are movements, many movements and, on the horizon, a single objective: to better surround Luka Doncic. The Slovenian, for the umpteenth time, has shown that he is capable of winning now. Again, with physical discomfort in between, with a superhuman effort and with performances to remember, but without a prize. Fall in the first round, before the same executioner, the Los Angeles Clippers, and wasting a 2-0 lead. Since then, the franchise offices have been a relentless focus of news. First, there was an article by Tim Cato and Sam Amick, on The Athletic, to shake the tree. Of him, even if Haralabos Voulgaris, director of development and quantitative research, were signed, Donnie Nelson, general manager, and Rick Carlisle, coach, fell out. In both cases, with a long history in the institution and being part of its most brilliant time. After departures, arrival time. First, Dirk Nowitzki, as an advisor, and then Jason Kidd, who will be the next to sit on the Texas bench. A non-stop with two common denominators: Doncic, as the ultimate goal of all decisions, and Mark Cuban, who is the one who makes them.

Throughout this process, the franchise owner has not hidden. After each move, a new statement. After Nelson's departure, he explained that it had been a decision made from both parties (something that was later denied in The Atheltic) and after Carlisle's, he was ashamed, appealing both to sports achievements and personal relationship. In the absence of official confirmation for Kidd's landing, he is now taking stock of everything that is happening within his entity, which is a lot. "Believe me, nobody wants to help Luka like me. What do we need? The truth is that we need a second scorer. There is no doubt about it," he summarizes in the sports field.

Ahead, Dallas has several important decisions. Doncic, except for a capital surprise, will sign an extension of more than 200 million dollars in five years, starting from the 2022-23 season. Starting from that base, the pieces can be fitted in many ways in the puzzle. Tim Hardaway Jr., Doncic's main support in these playoffs, will be a free agent. Losing or keeping him is one of the important decisions, as it may require salary engineering that touches other fronts. Rejecting the team option on Cauley-Stein, Josh Richardson saying no to his ... Jalen Brunson, meanwhile, could be a free agent in 2022, also one of the biggest assets today. And so one case after another. One dilemma after another.

Kristaps Porzingis is also one of them, but with little room for maneuver. It is not being the second sword that was expected. With him, together with Doncic, the intention was to build a duo to mark an era, at least, to lead the team in the immediate present and future, but he is falling far behind. First, due to injuries, which prevented many minutes shared on the track; then came the lack of performance in the decisive moments. In the middle, rumors of possible friction between the two stars. Cuban also speaks about him, with words that are difficult to interpret, somewhat cryptic, kind, directly, with the player, but with sports descriptions that, indirectly, can leave more doubts. "I think people have been unfair to KP (Kristaps Porzingis). KP is who he is. We never thought our need for a second scorer was as great as it really is. We thought we needed more defense and that would balance things out. Now, Tim Hardaway did a great job emerging as a catch-and-shoot and even improved his game beyond dribbling, but we have to improve there. And that's what we're going to be looking for this summer, "says Mark. Porzingis currently has $ 101 million signed for the next three seasons, with a player option in the last. The movements hardly pass through it.

With this map, then, the Mavericks start their summer, with the intention of finding new pieces to accompany the Slovenian player, but with very little margin in their salary space. At the moment, waiting for the new director of operations to arrive and with Jason Kidd awaiting the official announcement. Both, in principle, will have a lot to say in this mini reconstruction, which cannot go through many players, because it is practically unfeasible, but which can be decisive. "How do you get a star who can create his own shots so that the responsibility is not entirely Luka's?", Cuban ends. The million dollar question.

Photos from
Powered by Blogger.