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Is Dorian Finney-Smith Mavs’ Best Trade Asset This Offseason?

If the Dallas Mavericks want to add a second star next to Luka Doncic, they’ll likely have to give up one of their main contributors to this year’s team.

Luka Doncic has never had the luxury of playing next to another All-Star like some of his superstar peers have. The previous front office regime for the Dallas Mavericks tried to make this happen by trading for Kristaps Porzingis in 2019, but that plan unfortunately didn’t pan out, mostly due to Porzingis’ inability to stay on the court.

Kristaps Porzingis, Washington Wizards, Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic
kristaps-porzingis-denies-issues-luka-doncic
Kristaps Porzingis, Washington Wizards

Now, after the new regime traded Porzingis to the Washington Wizards earlier this season for Spencer Dinwiddie and Davis Bertans, the Mavs have shown signs of becoming a true title contender. Making it to the Western Conference Finals is no easy feat, but Dallas has been able to accomplish that despite not having great depth.

Given the Mavs’ playoff success, one could argue that the team simply needs to focus on improving depth rather than attempting to land a second star, and there might be some truth to that. But if Dallas does want to shoot for the stars, it won’t be cheap.

In a recent offseason piece, Bleacher Report’s Dan Favale listed each team’s best trade asset heading into the summer. Here’s what he had to say about the Mavs:

“Bringing in someone who scores at every level while lightening Luka's load remains a must for the Dallas Mavericks. Defenses remain unafraid to throw the kitchen sink at him, and neither Jalen Brunson nor Spencer Dinwiddie puts a bunch of pressure on the opposition as off-the-dribble jump shooters,” Favale writes.

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“Any purposeful acquisition must come via trade (or sign-and-trade). And if the Mavericks go the second-star route, it's tough to picture their getting it done without including Dorian Finney-Smith. … If the Mavs want to swing for the fences, his four-year, $55.6 million extension is their staunchest bargaining tool.”

Although the Mavs don’t have a true anchor on defense, Finney-Smith has led the charge on that end of the floor most nights. He’s also improved his offense every season since being signed as an undrafted free agent in 2016. During this Mavs playoff run, Finney-Smith is averaging 11.6 points, 5.6 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game while shooting 43.3 percent from 3-point range and playing the most minutes of any other player in the postseason.

Finney-Smith might be the Mavs’ best trade asset going forward, but unless Dallas lucks into potentially getting a star player looking for greener pastures, why rush to move one of the most important pieces of a team that was one of the last four standing this season?