Dallas Mavericks can’t keep pick No. 10 in the NBA Draft

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /

The Dallas Mavericks have a lot of tasks on their to-do list this summer. After the implosion that was the 2022-23 season, having a successful offseason is paramount. They were well aware of this reality when they were closing the season out (tanking), which is why following through on the next step is so important. .

Things didn’t work out when the Mavs traded for Kyrie Irving. It wasn’t as if he was a poor fit or an underperformer, it was the team around Irving and Luka Doncic was poorly constructed and the two stars rarely had the chance to play together.

The Dallas Mavericks are wisely doubling-down on Irving and attempting to re-sign him to an enormous new deal in free agency. But that alone isn’t going to get things done. The Mavs need to put their draft pick to work.

The Dallas Mavericks need to trade the No. 10 pick in the NBA Draft so they can dump salaries that are weighing them down.

The Mavs have a handful of ugly salaries on the books but none are worse than Davis Bertans. Bertans is signed for $17 million this season and $16 million next season, which is an exorbitant amount for a player who only occasionally fits as a role player.

Pushed up against the salary cap, the Dallas Mavericks find themselves handcuffed by Bertans’ deal. $17 million could be going to a contributing starter (or two), which is why this move is addition by subtraction.

there are no great options when you’re the team trying to dump salaries. Trading Pick 10 just happens to be the least-terrible of the options.

The best means to clear this contract is to sell off an asset that they don’t necessarily need today and force the receiving team to take on Bertan’s contract. Some will argue the Mavs are thin throughout the roster and desperately need young cheap players to pick up key roles. And that using Pick No. 10 to get one of those players is a great way to improve the roster.

True, but if Dallas doesn’t trade the pick, then they have to trade a player. And a player like Josh Green or Jaden Hardy is likely much more contributor-ready than anyone Dallas gets with that draft pick.

As you can see, there are no great options when you’re the team trying to dump salaries. Trading Pick 10 just happens to be the least-terrible of the options.

It’s important to point out, something will come back in return as well. The Dallas Mavericks can expect a modest bench player and/or a pick in the late-first as compensation. They could turn Bertans and No. 10 into two affordable role players and cap space. It helps them the most in the short and in the long-term (provided the pick they would have made at 10 doesn’t turn into a star, of course).

It’s imperative the Dallas Mavericks get out from under some of their bad contracts. If they can package pick 10 and Davis Bertans to clear cap space and return a couple fairly priced role players, they will lay the groundwork to  successful offseason. .