In just two months, Dallas has gone from a genuine playoffs team to a team in lottery contention.
The Mavs have fallen out of the play-in race and, thanks to a string of disappointing losses, they have very little chance of clawing their way back.
The Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving-led side are currently 11th in the West with a 37-42 record and shockingly are 9-16 since Irving was traded there in February.
They have three regular season games left to play against the Kings, Bulls and Spurs respectively but are one game behind OKC for the final play-in spot and Oklahoma own the tie-breaker.
That means that Dallas will have to win all three of their games and hope that the Thunder lose at least two of their remaining games.
If the Mavs go 2-1 in their last games, they will need OKC to lose all three of their match-ups against the Warriors, Jazz and Grizzlies respectively.
Unfortunately, the odds are very much stacked against Doncic and his side.
According to B/R, they have a six percent chance of making it to the postseason at the moment, compared to a 96 percent chance after the Irving trade was made.
In their most recent loss to the Hawks, Irving finished with a game-high of 41 points which included 14 points in the fourth quarter as well as go five rebounds, four assists, two steals and one block. But he only scored two points in OT after going 1-for-3 from the floor and 0-for-2 from beyond the arc.
Doncic in his last seven games has still been putting up crazy numbers, averaging 31 points, nine rebounds and 8.9 assists all while shooting 47.5 percent from the field and 33.3 percent from three and has recently pointed out that offense isn’t the problem, but defense is what is dragging the team down.
PLAY THEIR STARS OR TANK?
NBA Insider Shams Charania suggested that Dallas should rest their star players due to their slim chances of making the play-in.
“I think the Mavericks have to seriously look at whether you shut down Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving these last three games of the regular season,” Charania said on FanDuel TV on Monday.
If Dallas were to finish in tenth place, they have 65.9 percent chance of getting the No. 10 pick, plus a combined 13.9 percent chance of getting a top-four pick, which includes a 3 percent chance of drawing first and getting the amazing Victor Wembanyama. So it is definitely something to consider if you were Dallas’ front office.