In the past few months, rumors and speculations have continued to swirl that the Dallas Mavericks will move Dennis Smith, Jr. before the February NBA trade deadline. The emergence of Luka Doncic made several league executives believe that Smith, Jr. will soon be available on the trading block. Since the 2018-19 NBA season started, Doncic and Smith Jr. are noticeably struggling sharing the court together.
With Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle trusting Luka Doncic to carry the ball more often, Dennis Smith, Jr. has had a hard time flourishing off the ball. The Mavericks have long denied that they plan to trade the former No. 9 overall pick, but that didn’t stop the rumors from spreading around the league. Recently, on Twitter, Adrian Wojnarowski revealed that the Mavericks are currently looking for a trade for Smith, Jr. and mentioned the Orlando Magic and the Phoenix Suns as potential landing spots.
“The Dallas Mavericks are escalating discussions to find a trade for point guard Dennis Smith Jr., league sources tell ESPN. Phoenix and Orlando have engaged in ongoing talks with Mavs. Smith Jr., has sat out three straight games with what team has termed a sore back.”
It’s not a surprise why the Suns and the Magic have immediately expressed interest after the Mavericks put Dennis Smith, Jr.’s name on the trading block. Both teams are currently in dire need of a backcourt boost. Since losing Brandon Knight in a trade deal with the Houston Rockets, the Suns have been active on the market, searching for a starting-caliber point guard.
They tried to inquire about Terry Rozier’s availability via trade, but the Boston Celtics don’t have any plan of moving the young point guard, as they see him as insurance for Kyrie Irving. Dennis Smith, Jr. will be a great addition to the Suns, giving them a point guard who fits the timeline of the face of the franchise, Devin Booker. In the 28 games he has played this season, Smith, Jr. is averaging 12.6 points, 3.9 assists, and 1.4 steals on 44.3 percent shooting from the field, and 37.5 percent shooting from beyond the arc.
The same thing goes for the rebuilding Magic, who have 31-year-old D.J. Augustin serving as their starting point guard. As of now, it remains unknown what type of trade assets the Mavericks want in a potential deal involving Dennis Smith, Jr. Expect more rumors to circulate as the February NBA trade deadline approaches.