Ex-Mavs wing says Kristaps Porzingis isn’t liked in Dallas: ‘Luka did not like playing with him…there is an actual beef there’

Jesse Cinquini
4 Min Read
Ashley Landis/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports

With Game 1 of the NBA Finals between Luka Doncic’s Dallas Mavericks and Kristaps Porzingis’ Boston Celtics just a few days away, former Mavericks wing Chandler Parsons suggested that the latter isn’t well-liked in the city of Dallas.

“They do not like Porzingis in Dallas,” Parsons said regarding how the 7-foot-2 big man is perceived in the city. “Luka did not — yeah, Luka did not like playing with him. There is an actual beef there where there — it’s gonna be every time he touches the ball, he’s getting booed. No, I think that’s known. I think it’s known. It didn’t work out, and Dallas, for whatever reason — those fans, they’re proudful. They’re — if you’re hurt, if you’re not playing, if you’re not doing what you were doing in the years before you got to the Mavs, they don’t like you.”

Porzingis has been sidelined for a significant period with a calf injury, but he practiced with the Celtics on Saturday, and the expectation is that he will make his return to the floor sooner rather than later.

Before Porzingis’ current stint with the Celtics and time spent with the Washington Wizards, the Latvian played with the Mavericks for two-plus seasons. In 134 total regular-season games played in Dallas, he averaged 20.0 points per game on 44.8 percent accuracy from the field and 34.5 percent from 3-point range while adding 8.8 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.7 blocks per contest.

Injuries hampered Porzingis throughout his stint with the Mavericks. He didn’t play in more than 57 games in any of his seasons in Dallas and appeared in just 43 of the team’s 72 games during the 2020-21 regular season.

On top of that, during the 2021 NBA Playoffs — when the Mavericks were eliminated by the Los Angeles Clippers in seven games in the first round — Porzingis didn’t play at an All-Star level. The Clippers deserve credit for making his life difficult on the offensive side of the floor, as he averaged just 13.1 points on 29.6 percent shooting from 3-point range for the series.

However, the big man did play decent in the deciding Game 7, which the Mavericks lost by 15 points. He dropped 16 points on 6-of-12 shooting from the floor while also finishing with a team-high 11 rebounds and two steals.

Dallas decided to put an end to the Porzingis experiment when the team dealt him to the Wizards ahead of the 2022 trade deadline and received Spencer Dinwiddie and Davis Bertans in return.

Mavericks fans will soon find out whether the team will get its revenge against Porzingis or if the big man’s team will come out on top in the NBA Finals and win its 18th title in franchise history.

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Jesse is an aspiring sports journalist that has previously worked as a staff writer at SB Nation’s CelticsBlog and The Knicks Wall.