As the February NBA trade deadline approaches, rumors and speculations continue to swirl that the Dallas Mavericks are making Dennis Smith Jr. the No. 9 overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, available on the trade market. On Twitter, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN revealed that two NBA teams are currently engaged in trade talks with the Mavericks. These include the Phoenix Suns and the Orlando Magic.
According to the Dallas Morning News, neither Dennis Smith Jr. nor his agent has asked for a trade from the Mavericks. However, they won’t be opposing any deal if it’s a win-win situation for both parties. The report also noted that the Suns are not that much interested, but the Magic are “heavily in the Smith acquisition mix.”
Since the 2018 NBA offseason, the Magic have been aggressively searching for a starting caliber point guard who fits the timeline of Mo Bamba and Jonathan Isaac. Dennis Smith Jr. will be an incredible addition to the Magic’s young core. He’s only 23 and has shown lots of superstar potential. 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.
Sean Highkin of Bleacher Report recently created multiple scenarios involving Mavericks point guard Dennis Smith Jr. In a proposed trade deal with the Magic, the Mavericks will be trading Smith Jr. and Wesley Matthews to Orlando for Aaron Gordon. The deal works on ESPN‘s NBA Trade Machine.
“Orlando needs backcourt help in the worst way, with D.J. Augustin having started all 42 games. It’s no surprise the Magic have been among the teams most strongly connected to Smith. Out of the Magic’s three young bigs—the others being Mo Bamba and Jonathan Isaac—Gordon is the one the current front-office regime of John Hammond and Jeff Weltman didn’t draft. Although there’s been talk that Bamba, Isaac, and Gordon are versatile enough to play together, they’ve shared the floor for just 23 minutes this season.”
The Magic shouldn’t mind sacrificing Aaron Gordon if they think that the young “Big Three” of Dennis Smith Jr, Mo Bamba, and Jonathan Isaac could bring them back to title contention. Meanwhile, as Highkin noted, the acquisition of Gordon would fill a long-term hole in the Mavericks’ frontcourt. Gordon is under contract until the 2021-22 NBA season, and at 23, he is perfectly fitted to the developmental timeline of the new face of the Mavericks’ franchise, Luka Doncic.
However, as of now, it remains unknown if the Mavericks have a real interest in acquiring Aaron Gordon in a potential deal involving Dennis Smith Jr. Expect more rumors to circulate as the February NBA trade deadline draws near.