Walking into the 2023 season, Dallas has to upgrade its defense and rebounding and re-sign Kyrie Irving before the season begins. Dallas may trade the pick at No. 10 for a piece that might help them win now, or they can select a highly skilled prospect for the future who might have an effect in their rookie year.
Insert forward Taylor Hendricks from the University of Central Florida. He the guy the Mavericks should watch if they decide to go down the latter path. Hendricks scored 15.1 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.4 assists, and 1.7 blocks per game in 34 games as a rookie while also shooting 39.4 percent from outside the arc on fewer than five attempts a game.
Hendricks’ flexibility on both sides of the floor makes him a perfect match for Dallas. He’s is an offensive force who can fly through the rafters when he gets to the basket and has shown a smooth, consistent jumper from beyond the arc. But his ability to create shots and put the ball on the floor is still very raw. He can do it all as a defender. He fits the precise mold clubs strive for in a lead defender because of his stature and versatility in guarding different spots while defending the rim.
A versatile forward like Hendricks may be a true gem to increase your team’s ceiling in the NBA today, especially when players like Doncic surround him. Hendricks has a 6-foot-9 frame and a wingspan of 7-foot-2. His length and quickness give him advanced switch ability on defense. He is also a reliable outside shot.
Hendricks would be immediately inserted into the starting lineup if he were added to Dallas’ team as its constructed right now, filling the void created by Dorian Finney-Smith, who was traded to Brooklyn as part of the Kyrie Irving trade.
With Dallas holding the 10th pick, it’s highly conceivable that Hendricks may fall off the board before the Mavericks can sign him. Dallas might have to choose Hendricks for themselves if he drops to No. 10, given his flexibility and potential, and put an end to any incoming trade calls.