The Dallas Mavericks landed the 13th overall pick in the year’s NBA Draft, putting them in unfamiliar territory in the lottery after missing the playoffs for the first time in 13 years. Although Dallas won’t have a top pick in a draft that lacks much top-level talent, there should be a decent selection of big men for them to pick from when their number gets called.
Dallas will be in need of front court help with Chris Kaman, Elton Brand and Brendan Wright all slated to hit free agency this summer. The Mavericks do have a ton of cap space and could possibly be in the running to sign Dwight Howard, but they shouldn’t bet on that becoming a reality.
There will be a few options available for Dallas at 13. Gonzaga‘s Kelly Olynyk isn’t very athletic, but has the type of face up game that could flourish under the tutelage of Dirk Nowitzki. International prospect Rudy Gobert may be raw but at 7’2″, 238 lbs and with a 7’8 1/2″ wingspan has the type of measurements that NBA teams will be intrigued with. Duke‘s Mason Plumlee, Pittsburgh freshman Steven Adams and Louisville big man Gorgui Dieng could also all be solid options.
Some would argue that Dallas should look towards drafting a point guard, but there aren’t many worthy of a lottery pick this year. With the free agent market for centers set at a higher rate than point guards it would make more sense financially for Dallas to draft a big man and pursue a PG in free agency, giving the Mavericks a young player to build around from the inside out.