When the Dallas Mavericks traded for Kristaps Porzingis in 2019, it was clear that they were in win-now mode. And Porzingis was supposed to be the perfect superstar to pair with young Luka Doncic.
While Doncic has made it clear that he is one of the most skilled players in the NBA, Kristaps Porzingis has kind of teetered off.
After spending the past couple of seasons riddled with injuries, Porzingis hasn’t really gotten what he had hoped for out of his tenure with the Mavericks. He went from being the best player on a big market team (the Knicks), to a fine player, who is a decent compliment to Luka Doncic in Dallas.
After Porzingis, Doncic and the Mavs lost their thrilling seven-game series with the Clippers on Sunday night, many are speculating on the future of Kristaps. According to ESPN’s Tim MacMahon, Kristaps Porzingis is fed up with the dynamic that has been created around Luka Doncic.
Here’s what the report said about how Kristaps Porzingis and Luka Doncic are reminiscent of Dirk Nowitzski and Jason Terry:
I’d compare it to Jet and Dirk. If you remember, when we first got Jet, Dirk was not a fan. Dirk did not like him. And we lost in a playoff series because Jet made a mistake against [Steve] Nash and that just made it even worse. They weren’t best friends at the beginning, but they grew to like each other and grew to be great friends and that’s just part of the process when you’ve got young kids who are growing up. It took forever before Dirk and Jet did anything off the court together. A long time. Yeah, I mean, KP and Luka get along fine. It’s just that they’re different people. They like to do different things.”
After the Game 7 loss to the Clippers, Kristaps Porzingis talked about his future with the Dallas Mavericks.
“Good question,” Porzingis said after Game 7, pausing to collect his thoughts. “How do I feel? I mean, I’m good. I tried to put in the work, tried to work hard. I do my part, listen to the coaches, what I’m asked to do, and that’s it.
“I try to keep it simple for myself, so I’m not overthinking, and I try to focus on what I can control. That’s being a better basketball player, going into the offseason hungry. I want to get better physically [and] on the basketball court. I’m going to put that work in to get better, and then the rest of the stuff will resolve itself.”
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While Kristaps didn’t throw anybody under the bus, he also doesn’t necessarily sound like a guy who’s too invested in the future of the Dallas Mavericks, either.
If the Dallas Mavericks want to continue to build around Luka Doncic, it may be best to take Kristaps Porzingis out of the picture, and focus on finding more guys that fit better with their young superstar.
It’s an important offseason for the Mavs, and I wouldn’t be too surprised if it starts with a Kristaps Porzingis trade.
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