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Could Trade For Magic Forward Jonathan Isaac Elevate Mavs?

Despite a successful postseason run that isn't quite over yet, the Dallas Mavericks still need to explore adding more consistent talent to their roster this offseason.

The Dallas Mavericks have played well this postseason, but talent upgrades are still needed in order to take them to the next level. Although the Mavs have fought hard in their semifinals series with the league-leading Phoenix Suns, they're still in a 3-2 hole and have been blown out in all three of the losses as Game 6 looms on Thursday night.

Dallas has some really good, home-grown talent on its roster in the form of role players, like Dorian Finney-Smith and Maxi Kleber, who have both developed into key 3-and-D forwards after initially being undrafted free agents.

The Mavs also have Jalen Brunson, who was drafted in the second round of the 2018 draft after Luka Doncic. Brunson has had a breakout postseason, as he's averaging 23.3 points, 4.8 rebounds and 3.7 assists on 45.9 percent shooting from the field in 11 games. He figures to get a significant pay raise in unrestricted free agency in less than two months from now.

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Despite some of the bright spots on the Mavs' roster, though, their overall talent is lacking in comparison to what a team like the 64-win Suns have to offer. Technically, the Mavs could still come back and win the series against Phoenix, but the odds aren't in their favor – 82 percent of teams go on to win the series after taking a 3-2 lead. And if Dallas does end up losing, the focus must turn to making roster upgrades that can truly take the team to the next level.

When surveying the NBA landscape for impactful, yet affordable, trade options for the Mavs this offseason, one name that comes to mind is Orlando Magic forward Jonathan Isaac.

The former No. 6 pick in the 2016 draft hasn't played in an NBA game since the 2020 Orland Bubble when he tore his ACL. At the time of the injury, Isaac was average career highs in points (11.9), rebounds (6.8), steals (1.6), blocks (2.3) and field goal percentage (47%) while playing 28.8 minutes per game.

The Mavs found out firsthand in that 2019-2020 season just how useful Isaac can be on both ends of the court, as he put up 13 points (5-8 shooting), 10 rebounds, five assists, four steals and six blocks against them in a one-point loss for the Magic on Nov. 6, 2019. Isaac was a team-best +15 in that game.

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Due to the fact that he hasn't played in two years, Isaac, who still has three full years left on his contract worth $52 million, could be a guy worth taking a chance on. Here is a trade scenario we could see being worth it for both sides:

Mavs receive: Jonathan Isaac

Magic receive: Maxi Kleber, Dwight Powell and two future second-round draft picks


We've already talked about how Orlando big man Mo Bamba could potentially blossom alongside Doncic if the Mavs end up pursuing him in restricted free agency. If the Mavs really wanted to get the most bang for their buck in this hypothetical scenario, they might even want to consider throwing in a first-round pick and another player to make the salary work in order to receive both Isaac and Bamba at the same time.

These kind of talks typically heat up as we get closer to the end of the NBA season. With the draft being on June 23, we won't have to wait too much longer to see what moves teams are looking to make.