The Dallas Mavericks need to improve their roster around Luka. They need both additional scoring as well as an overall better defensive talent. They don’t have a ton of options but I believe this deal is high risk, high reward.
There are essentially 2 deals at play here. The first is:
Dallas receives Jonathan Isaac, Mo Bamba & Cole Anthony from Orlando in exchange for Christian Wood, Tim Hardaway Jr., & Frank Ntilikina. This deal sees Dallas address their defense and their depth at PG.
Isaac is finally healthy and playing after 2 years of no action, and a lot has transpired since then. For starters, they not only have 1 but 2 Power Forwards who’ve risen as their 2 best players which leaves Isaac as a 3rd string 4 or an off-the-bench 3. This is one of those high risk investments I mentioned but it makes sense for Dallas to invest in a young talent like Isaac because his skill-set directly compliments Luka with his length and defensive upside.
Bamba on the other hand is getting paid 8 figures to play under 20 mins/game with a mediocre output. The Magic don’t seem too invested. With that said, in the right system he could turn out to be the next Gobert, who the Mavs expressed interest in last offseason. Now the reason the Mavs go for him and Isaac is because Wood is on an expiring, and he hasn’t exactly addressed their needs this season and if nothing else their length will be very useful.
Lastly, Cole Anthony is a very useful PG in this league but he’s stuck as the 3rd option at point with Fultz and Suggs already vying for the starter spot. Injuries are to credit for Anthony still getting significant minutes but he’s a piece Orlando can afford to deal away. Dallas would retain a more reliable guard who might be able to fill the Brunson slot to allow for Dinwiddie to return as their sixth man. I’m not suggesting they’re the same talent but their best bet to make up for the loss of Brunson is to hit a slight reset and develop another young but solid PG. I would also argue that Cole is more switchable because he has more of a scorer’s mentality than JB.
For Orlando, THJr. gets them an additional perimeter scorer and Wood gives them scoring from the Center spot, this should be helpful for a team that’s 27th in scoring. Ntilikina is a defensive PG but he and Wood give them cap flexibility in the offseason. Next year should be the season for them to return to the postseason. Depending on what happens on draft night, they could potentially sign major free agents that can compliment their young core setting themselves up for both immediate and future success.
Dallas gets Kelly Oubre for Reggie Bullock and a future 2nd. This is a buyout market move and maybe THE move that elevates Dallas’ play. Oubre has been a lowkey borderline All Star level player this season. He’ll be tasked to be their secondary scoring option. Getting traded to a playoff team could potentially make the rest of Oubre’s career. That means he could make the case for a massive pay day if he and Dallas play well.
As for Charlotte, as I said this is a buyout move. Oubre is on an expiring, cashing out now to land a 3&D player who can keep the offensive production at bay while addressing your needs on the defensive end is smart move here. And they land a pick in the process. You never know when those might come in handy.