When the Dallas Mavericks traded for perennial All-Star guard Kyrie Irving several weeks ago, some thought they had just become legitimate championship contenders.
After all, they already had Luka Doncic, a man who puts up video game-type stats and is always an MVP candidate, as well as decent supporting players such as Christian Wood and Tim Hardaway Jr.
But the trade, at least so far, has been a dud.
The Mavs are a shocking 3-8 with both Irving and Doncic in the lineup, and they have fallen from sixth place to 11th place in the Western Conference in a matter of days.
They have now lost four games in a row, including back-to-back games to the Charlotte Hornets, one of the worst teams in the NBA.
It has led Tim MacMahon to call them “the most disappointing team in the NBA.”
"[The Mavs are] the most disappointing team in the NBA!"
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) March 27, 2023
He even pointed out that the Mavs’ 2023 draft pick, which was sent to the New York Knicks in the Kristaps Porzingis trade a few years ago, is top-10 protected, and that it isn’t a lock that they will end up keeping it.
One of the biggest problems Dallas has is defense, as it ranks 23rd in defensive rating.
They have a lack of role players who play above-average defense or box out and aggressively crash the boards on either end of the floor.
Assuming Dallas does make the playoffs, they could be ripe for a first-round exit.
If that’s how this season ends, one has to wonder if Irving will even be on the roster come next season.NEXT: Luka Doncic Finds Support From His Former Coach