June 4, 2023

Great Indian Mutiny

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Unseen tank? 5 Mavericks, including Kyrie Irving, will not play against the Bulls

Well, this escalated quickly. Late Friday morning, less than 15 minutes after no players were listed as suspected or suspect for Friday’s home game against Chicago, the Mavericks suddenly announced that five players would miss the game to rest or recover from injury.

The players who will sit out are starters Kyrie Irving, Tim Hardaway Jr., lead reserve Josh Green, Maxie Kleiber and Christian Wood.

With very poor playing prospects for Dallas requiring wins over Chicago and Sunday against San Antonio and Oklahoma City’s loss at home to Memphis on Sunday – it’s clear that the franchise has turned its attention toward trying to keep its first-round pick. June draft.

NBA Draft Predictions: Mavericks lottery odds if Dallas misses the playoffs

On Friday evening, less than 90 minutes before the warning at the American Airlines Center, coach Jason Kidd also said that Luka Doncic would only play in the first quarter. Kidd described the sudden shift in players’ seating as an “organizational decision”.

When asked how he felt about the organization not skillfully pulling the plug on the season even though Dallas has a narrow path to the championship, Kidd tried to be diplomatic.

“Things change,” he said. “Understanding as an organisation, they’ve made that decision. But we still have to be professional, go out and give our best, whoever we can play.”

Kidd was then asked how the players felt about the decision. Earlier this week, Doncic vowed to keep playing as long as Dallas has a mathematical chance of getting into play. Once again, Kidd searched for a diplomatic answer.

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“That’s a great question,” he said. “I think it’s just understanding, we’ve been fighting for our lives. And understanding that’s the situation we’re in. But the organization made a decision to change. And so we have to follow through on that. And that’s just something that happens.”

“And so the players who play, we have to go out and do our best to move forward. We talked about that this afternoon. And the players who play are going to go out to try and play to win. You know, you have to be a pro, you can’t cheat the game. And so they are these guys who They play there to win and then we’ll go from there.”

Not coincidentally, Friday’s discount directly affects Dallas’ ability to retain the pick. Top ten selection is protected. If the selection falls outside the top 10, he will be transferred to the Knicks, as eventual compensation for the 2019 tag team deal that brought Kristaps Porzingis to Dallas.

Dallas is currently tied for the 10th worst record in the NBA. With which team you ask? Why, it’s Friday’s discount, bulls of course. Which sets up a great scenario for a Friday night, as the Bulls – who are booked for last place to play in the tournament from the Eastern Conference. Chicago also benches a slew of players, including rookies DeMar DeRozan, Zach LaVine, and Patrick Beverley.

“Awesome” in tonight’s case is probably a euphemism for “bad basketball.”

Many Mavericks fans seem to be getting their wish, albeit later than they could have hoped. Before Wednesday night’s home game against Sacramento, Mavericks governor Mark Cuban was asked if he understood why so many fans on social media expressed their preference for the Tanks in an effort to preserve the draft pick.

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“The players don’t want to do that,” Cuban said. “The players won’t do that.”

But did the Cuban understand the masses’ point of view on this matter? “Oh, yeah, of course I understand,” he said.

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When the Mavericks defeated the Kings that night, it increased their chances of capturing the last playing spot to 52 percent compared to 48 percent in Oklahoma City, according to the Basketball Daily Odds Report. But the Thunder’s victory in Utah Thursday night flipped those percentages to 77.2% for OKC and 22.8% for Dallas.

Returning to Cuban’s view of players: It’s largely the organization and head coach Jason Kidd who decides who plays, when, and how much. So, Friday night’s Bulls fight will be “The Matator” Luka Doncic and a group of reserves, though Doncic’s time on the court may be short-lived and a nod toward the fact that it’s “I Feel Slovenia Night” in the AAC.

Given today’s turn of events, don’t expect the Mavericks to put their best sneakers forward, so to speak, for Sunday’s home and season finale against the Spurs.

Finishing 10th-worst isn’t a guarantee of getting a top-10 pick, but it will increase the Mavericks’ odds to 65% of doing so when the NBA lottery is held on May 16.

During that Wednesday interview, Cuban was asked about the scenario of securing a top-ten pick and whether it would be best used to trade or draft young talent.

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He said, “We’ll see what’s there, what’s available.” “We’ll see what’s on the board. I hope we don’t know as we shock the world, but if we end up in the lottery, so be it.”

After the turn of events on Friday morning, it would really shock the world if the Mavericks found a way to participate in the championship.

Find out more Mavericks coverage from the Dallas Morning News here.