Zach LaVine Trade Rumors: Some With Mavericks Are Fans of Bulls Star

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekTwitter LogoFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 31, 2023

ORLANDO, FLORIDA - JANUARY 28: Zach LaVine #8 of the Chicago Bulls dribbles the ball to the basket in the second half against the Orlando Magic at Amway Center on January 28, 2023 in Orlando, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)

Julio Aguilar/Getty Images

There are reportedly some members of the Dallas Mavericks organization who like Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine, even if a trade seems unlikely ahead of the Feb. 9 deadline.

ESPN’s Tim MacMahon reported “there are people who have some juice within the Mavericks organization who are Zach LaVine fans” during a discussion with Zach Lowe for The Lowe Post podcast (46:45).

However, MacMahon also cushioned that with plenty of caveats, adding that Dallas wouldn’t be “doing backflips” for a LaVine trade because of concerns about his health, defense, contract and what the team would have to give up in Dorian Finney-Smith and maybe Josh Green.

LaVine is not scheduled for unrestricted free agency until 2027 (player option for 2026-27) as part of his max contract extension he signed with the Bulls. He also dealt with a knee injury for extended stretches last season and has never been known as a defensive stalwart.

That could be a concern for a Mavericks team that is a lowly 24th in the league in defensive rating, per

It should be noted the Bulls may not be trading LaVine anywhere this season. After all, K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago reported “the current impression of the rival executives to whom I have spoken” is that Chicago will not trade him, DeMar DeRozan or Nikola Vučević.

An argument can be made that’s a poor strategy for a disappointing 23-26 squad that doesn’t look like a serious contender with its current core and could make a splash move or two to accelerate a rebuild, but perhaps there is still hope that the group can turn the corner and threaten some of the top teams in the league come playoff time.

As for Dallas, it could still use secondary scoring outside of Luka Dončić, who is third in the league in usage rate, per

LaVine, a two-time All-Star who is averaging 23.8 points per game, would fit the bill as someone who could provide just that, which is surely why some within the front office are apparently fans of his as the deadline approaches.

However, there are a number of other concerns, not the least of which may be the reality that he isn’t even on the trade block. It doesn’t seem like he will end up in Dallas at this point.

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