DALLAS - The Dallas Mavericks truly believe that Kristaps Porzingis is one of the franchise's two "cornerstone players,'' which is essentially the foundation of team owner Mark Cuban's insistence that multiple reports of the Mavs examining the trade market for Porzingis are wrong.
"There have been no discussions about KP with any team," Cuban tells DallasBasketball.com on Tuesday morning, "We have not discussed him in a trade at all.''
Furthermore, Cuban adds, he's miffed at one of the stories' sourced quotes about Porzingis the player.
"Whoever this person is they quoted,' Cuban tells us, "obviously was more interested in talking shit about one of our players publicly. And that is not acceptable.''
Porzingis' name was discussed in detail in a Monday evening Bleacher Report story that claimed - while quoting an assortment of unnamed NBA sources - that Dallas has been "gauging'' Porzingis’s trade value ahead of the NBA trade deadline. A second report out of New York says the Mavs have specifically spoken with the Golden State Warriors.
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However, Cuban has denied the Mavs have spoken to any teams about possibly dealing away Porzingis via trade.
And he is especially taking issue with this quote from the B/R story:
"It looks like it's impossible for him to get in a stance. He looks like a scarecrow out there," one Western Conference executive said. "You don't expect him to necessarily be great from the jump, but I've watched Porzingis a couple of times this year, and I'm not sure the guy can guard anybody."
We have detailed the unlikelihood of such a deal at this time, which is partly due to the 7-3 Latvian presently dealing with injury issues that would place his value at an all-time low. Additionally, there are positive issues involving patience and chemistry and KP being part of a roster that is "Luka-friendly''; Doncic has a fine relationship with Porzingis, and the Mavs will surely factor that in when it comes to almost any roster move going forward.
Porzingis is currently contributing 20.5 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game, but has missed 12 of Dallas' 29 games due to injury. Dallas sits at a disappointing 14-15 but can pull to .500 on Tuesday with a second night of a back-to-back meeting with the visiting Boston Celtics.