Mavericks Worst Move #7: The Porzingis Trades
In February 2019, the Mavericks made a blockbuster deal to acquire center Kristaps Porzingis from the Knicks for DeAndre Jordan, Dennis Smith Jr., Wesley Matthews, and two first-round picks. At the time, that seemed like a reasonable trade package for a young star who had the potential to be a superstar.
Better yet, Porzingis would be paired with a future superstar in Doncic. However, he was coming off an ACL tear where he missed a season and a half of basketball before finally suiting up again, this time for Dallas. In Dallas, Porizingis simply wasn’t the same player that he was in New York and also struggled to stay healthy.
The Mavericks later dumped Porzingis on the Washington Wizards for Spencer Dinwiddie and Davis Bertans, even giving up a second-round pick to give up the best player in the trade. Unfortunately for Dallas, he had one of the best seasons of his career in 2022–23 for the Wizards, proving that his struggles with the Mavericks had more to do with fit than anything else.
Giving up a lot to acquire him and later offloading him for less than what they gave up proved to be two bad decisions that hamstrung the team for a couple of seasons, but gambling on Porzingis was at least worth the risk.