Radio host Justin Termine is not a fan of the Dallas Mavericks retaining guard Kyrie Irving in free agency this offseason.
Termine believes that the move to keep Irving “spells the end” of superstar Luka Doncic’s time in Dallas, citing other teams that have had bumpy experiences with the eight-time All-Star during his NBA career.
Irving reportedly agreed to a three-year, $126 million deal with the Mavericks this week. The final season of the contract is a player option.
— SiriusXM NBA Radio (@SiriusXMNBA) July 1, 2023
“In my opinion, this spells the end to Luka Doncic’s time in Dallas,” Termine said. “The Dallas Mavericks – and I love Mark Cuban, so I’m sorry I have to say this – are making a massive mistake and not learning the lessons that they know now in Cleveland and Boston and in Brooklyn. Kyrie Irving has agreed to a three-year, $126 million dollar contract.”
Dallas traded Spencer Dinwiddie, Dorian Finney-Smith, a 2029 unprotected first-round pick, 2029 second-round pick and 2027 second-round pick for Irving at the trade deadline in the 2022-23 season. Ultimately, the deal didn’t help Dallas make any sort of playoff run, as the Mavericks finished 11th in the West, missing the play-in tournament entirely.
The team certainly didn’t want to lose him for nothing in free agency, and it decided that it will give the backcourt of Irving and Doncic another go. Across the 20 games that Irving appeared in with the Mavericks in the 2022-23 season, the team went 8-12.
Termine seems to think that the Irving experiment will eventually cause Doncic to want out, but Dallas does have the young superstar under contract through the 2025-26 season. Doncic also has a player option for the 2026-27 campaign.
It’s understandable to be concerned given how Irving’s previous destinations have fared, but the Mavericks clearly want to give him and Doncic a fair shot to see if they can contend.
Irving was an All-Star in the 2022-23 season. He averaged 27.1 points, 5.1 rebounds and 5.5 assists per game while shooting 49.4 percent from the field and 37.9 percent from deep.
It’s worth noting that his availability has been a concern in recent years because of injuries and controversies.
The Mavericks are certainly hoping that Irving can stay on the floor, especially since the team moved draft capital and two rotation players in order to acquire him in the first place.
As long as Doncic is on the roster, Dallas is going to be a dangerous team to face, but it seems like Termine thinks it’s only a matter of time before the 24-year-old moves on from the Mavericks.