It is that time of the year again. Everyone everywhere is thinking about their New Year’s resolutions and what they need to do to better themselves as the calendars switch over. The National Basketball Association is no different, as players, teams, general managers, and franchise owners all look at their NBA needs and to-do lists, entering 2024. Here is perhaps the biggest need for each NBA team in the Southwest Division:
Mavericks Resolution: Increase shared court time between Doncic and Irving.
Dallas needs… 40+ games where both Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving are sharing the court together the rest of this season. After getting Irving in the middle of last season, the dynamic guard duo has somehow only played 32 total games together.
Even more concerning, the Mavericks are a disappointing 15-17 when both stars are active. Last season, there was no cohesion between the duo and Dallas missed the play-in entirely, in part due to their choice to tank to the 11th seed once they knew last season’s team was not a good team.
Luckily, that decision did work out and Dallas kept their draft pick allowing them to draft Dereck Lively II, who now starts for them as a rookie. Unfortunately, Kyrie Irving had a significant ankle injury early this season and has missed 12 games in a row for the Mavs. If Luka and friends want to have any shot at making another Western Conference Finals, Irving needs to find a groove with the Mavs.
The beginning of the season was promising for a theoretical blueprint of a successful version of this team, but more reps are definitely needed in order to iron out any issues, specifically on the defensive end of the floor.