Luka-Kyrie-Led Mavericks Tipped as Western Conference's Most Improved Team

DeMarcus Cousins discusses impactful NBA trades on 'Bully Ball'.

by Nouman Rasool
Luka-Kyrie-Led Mavericks Tipped as Western Conference's Most Improved Team
© Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

The Dallas Mavericks, a renowned NBA team, have executed a series of strategic moves at the recent trade deadline that are set to significantly enhance their position in the Western Conference standings. These developments have caught the attention of a former NBA player and four-time All-Star, who has confidently predicted that the Mavericks are poised to make the most substantial leap in the Western Conference in the latter half of the season.

Mavericks' Strategic Acquisitions

In a recent episode of the "Bully Ball" podcast, hosted by Rachel Nichols, DeMarcus Cousins shared his insights on the Mavericks' latest roster changes. He highlighted the acquisition of players Daniel Gafford and P.J.

Washington as pivotal, noting their potential to synergize effectively with stars Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving. Cousins expressed his admiration for the Mavericks' strategic moves, stating, "I'm gonna have to lean with the Mavericks.

They made some really good moves at the deadline." He specifically lauded the addition of Gafford, whom he described as a more seasoned version of the team's younger player, Dereck Lively II. According to Cousins, Gafford's inclusion is a "perfect move" for the Mavericks.

Further emphasizing the team's astute trade deadline decisions, Cousins added, "To add a stretch four like P.J. Washington, who shoots at a very high clip, and can put the ball on the floor a little, can make plays... I think they made some brilliant moves at the deadline.

I think this team will only get better." The Mavericks have skillfully upgraded Grant Williams to P.J. Washington, and as Cousins pointed out, have brought in Daniel Gafford as an experienced counterpart to Dereck Lively II.

This enhancement of their frontcourt is timely, especially considering the likelihood of facing Nikola Jokic and the defending champion Denver Nuggets in the playoffs. While the Mavericks' limited draft picks could pose a challenge in team building if a trade request emerges from Luka Doncic, their current trajectory is promising.

They are riding a seven-game winning streak and boast one of the league's easiest remaining schedules, positioning them well for a playoff berth. The remainder of February sees the Mavericks embarking on a series of road games, part of a four-game journey stretching into March.

They face the Indiana Pacers, followed by the Cleveland Cavaliers, and conclude the month against a Joel Embiid-less Philadelphia 76ers. With a current record of 33-23, the Mavericks hold the sixth spot in the Western Conference, narrowly trailing the New Orleans Pelicans and just ahead of the Sacramento Kings and Phoenix Suns.

This upward momentum, combined with their strategic roster enhancements, positions the Dallas Mavericks as a formidable force in the Western Conference, drawing significant attention from fans and analysts alike.