By: Anthony Miller
With the 2023 NBA Draft approaching in just a few days, the Dallas Mavericks own the tenth overall pick in the draft with multiple options at their disposal.
Heading into the draft, the Dallas Mavericks only have one pick which is the tenth overall pick. The reason for that was a 2020 trade they were involved in with the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Detroit Pistons involved two of the Mavericks’ second-round picks in 2023 and 2026.
There is a lot of speculation that the Mavericks could trade down to pick up more picks or an additional player. They don’t have the draft capital they would want so it could be a good move especially since the team already is not far off from being a playoff team. Dallas’ focus is more on getting depth and adding key pieces in free agency around Luka Doncic.
Should Dallas not want to move their pick, they should have plenty of options to choose from with the tenth pick. They should be looking for a big man down in the paint that can rebound at a high level and play good post-defense. Dallas’ guards are solid scorers especially if Kyrie Irving comes back so they need help on the defensive side of the ball. The Mavericks have plenty of potential options that could land them to give them the depth they need.
NBA Draft Prospects to Target for Dallas
Taylor Hendricks, F/C, UCF
One thing that has been haunting Dallas for a few years is their lack of size at the forward/center position. Drafting someone of Taylor Hendricks’ caliber would be massive for this team. Last season with UCF, Hendricks averaged 15.1 points and seven rebounds per game. He also shot 47.8 percent from the field for the Knights.
What makes him a fun prospect to watch is the number of skills he possesses for a team looking for a well-rounded player. He’s super athletic and can play either small forward or center for the Mavericks. Hendricks can also cause issues on defense standing at six foot nine inches to rebound and block shots. He’s a solid shooter from mid-range when called upon. One aspect that Hendricks will have to improve is bulking up in size as he is more on the thinner side for being closer to seven feet tall.
If he is available at ten, it doesn’t make sure for Dallas to pass on him. Granted, the Mavericks need more draft capital and could add another player to the team. Head coach Jason Kidd should want to have some youth on the team and bringing in a player like Hendricks could be a difference-maker in a couple of years if not sooner.
Anthony Black, G, Arkansas
Defense is a concern for this Mavericks team, and they need guards that can defend stronger on the perimeter. Not sure if Anthony Black will be able to drop that far, but he could be that guard they need. The former Duncanville native recorded 12.8 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 3.9 assists per game for the Arkansas Razorbacks last season.
Black isn’t going to be a great option on the offensive side, but he can make a difference on defense. He’s a playmaker with the ball as he can be a solid passer and as a guard can rebound well. He would make a good complementary piece for Doncic and Irving to set them up to score. The aspect of his game that needs improvement is his jump shot as he won’t be a player that can score 20 points a game for a team.
It’s nice to have a scorer, but Dallas already has plenty of them on the roster. They need a player who can be a role player that dominates on defense and distribute the ball to their stars. Black would make for a good option for the team.
Cason Wallace, G, Kentucky
Good defense should be the theme of this draft for Dallas whether it’s on the perimeter or in the paint. Cason Wallace is another example of a guard who isn’t a scorer but can do all the other things Dallas would need him to do. With Kentucky last season, Wallace averaged 11.7 points, 4.3 assists, and two steals per game last season.
Wallace won’t blow fans away with his offense, but he is a good opportunity shooter as he is a solid three-point shooter making 34.6 percent of his threes with the Wildcats. Where he excels is on defense and how he can pick his moments to force turnovers. He’s a good distributor of the ball as well as getting the ball in the hands of the top scorers.
Some draft experts have Wallace getting drafted within the top ten of the draft and some have him falling out of it. Regardless, should none of the big men be available, Wallace would make a good option. Dallas needs help on defense and a solid passer who has some good offensive traits as a shooter. Wallace would make a good pick for them.
Featured Image via Sports Illustrated