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Report: Mavs Jalen Brunson Seeking 4-Year, $80 Million Contract

Dallas Mavericks guard Jalen Brunson has lofty expectations for his next contract as he approaches free agency in the upcoming offseason.

The growth of Jalen Brunson has been a revelation for the Dallas Mavericks this season.

After multiple years of searching for a worthy secondary playmaker to pair next to superstar Luka Doncic, Brunson has taken some pressure off of the Mavs’ front office by developing into just that.

According to multiple reports, Brunson, who is set to be an unrestricted free agent this summer, is seeking a four-year, $80 million contract. However, such a figure is considered a 'large number' for a player with some questions in terms of translating to playoff basketball. 

Brunson faces a similar market, but the guard is believed by many to be seeking near a four-year, $80 million contract. That is a large number, especially for a player that several competing executives think is too big of a target defensively in the playoffs. — Bleacher Report’s Eric Pincus

For the Mavericks, it would be a real challenge to find an alternative option to fill the role of secondary ball handler alongside Doncic if Brunson isn’t retained. As a result, our educated guess is that the Mavs will prioritize keeping Brunson at his asking price.

Keep in mind, the Mavericks have posted a 7-2 record in the nine games both Brunson and Doncic have started alongside each other. Brunson has averaged 17.9 points, 4.9 rebounds, 3.7 assists, and 1.4 steals with impressive offensive efficiency in those games.

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If staying beneath the luxury tax is also a priority for the Mavericks in this upcoming offseason, perhaps attempting to move on from Tim Hardaway Jr. is the best avenue to clearing the necessary space to comfortably attempt to retain both Brunson and Finney-Smith. 

The level of compensation that Hardaway Jr. received last offseason is clearly starter-level money, and he lacks the creation skill-set to be a supercharged sixth man. Despite his weaknesses, though, Hardaway Jr.’s gravity has still been helpful on offense this season, even though he's shooting just 32.9 percent from deep.

It could be a real challenge to find a potential trade suitor to take on Hardaway Jr.'s $21.3 million in salary. 

Perhaps a team in need of a veteran shooting guard that can be involved in off-ball screening actions would consider Hardaway Jr. in a 'buy-low' type of trade.

With how Jalen Brunson continues to play this season, it will not be a surprise if he has plenty of interested suitors lined up, both at the trade deadline and in free agency.