Grant Williams

Mavs Notes: Kuzma, G. Williams, Washington, Gafford, Front Office

Following up on reports that Kyle Kuzma was nearly traded from the Wizards to the Mavericks last week, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst said on the latest Hoop Collective podcast (YouTube link) that he believes Dallas was offering two first-round picks to Washington in its proposal for the veteran forward.

One of those first-rounders was almost certainly the 2024 pick that Dallas acquired from Oklahoma City, which will likely end up being the more favorable of the Clippers’ and Thunder’s first-rounders. According to Tim MacMahon on The Hoop Collective, the Mavs and Thunder “very quietly” agreed to the deal involving that pick several days before the trade deadline, even though it wasn’t reported until Thursday.

The second first-rounder the Mavs offered for Kuzma would’ve presumably been their own 2027 pick, which was ultimately sent to Charlotte in the P.J. Washington deal instead, with top-two protection.

Windhorst, MacMahon, and ESPN’s Tim Bontemps agree it’s probably safe to assume the Mavs were looking to include Grant Williams in that potential Kuzma trade, which means the proposal might have been something like Williams, Richaun Holmes, a 2024 first-round pick, and the Mavs’ 2027 first-rounder for Kuzma. It’s unclear whether the ’27 pick would’ve had the same light protection that Dallas agreed to in its deal with Charlotte.

Ultimately, after the Wizards decided not to move forward on the Kuzma trade, Dallas ended up sending one of those first-rounders and Holmes to Washington in exchange for Daniel Gafford, completing separate deals with the Wizards and Hornets rather than just a single trade for Kuzma.

Here’s more on the Mavericks:

  • After winning his first game with the Hornets, Williams raised some eyebrows with his postgame comments, which could’ve been interpreted as a shot at his former team in Dallas, notes Brian Robb of “It’s great to get a win for the city and play for the jersey that’s across your chest, not on your back,” Williams told reporters. “Everybody touched the ball, we trusted one another, a team that never played, practiced together, every single person seemed like they had each other’s back.” MacMahon reported after the deadline that Williams had “personality clashes” and “rubbed a lot of people the wrong way” during his half-season with the Mavs, adding in the latest Hoop Collective podcast that the forward reported to Dallas out of shape this past fall.
  • Tim Cato, Josh Robbins, and Dave DuFour take a closer look at how Washington and Gafford will fit in Dallas, examining what the two newcomers will and won’t be able to do for the team.
  • New Mavericks governor Patrick Dumont spoke to Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News (subscription required) about the hierarchy within the front office under the new ownership group. While reports have indicated that Mark Cuban retained his control of basketball operations, Dumont didn’t exactly confirm that. “The way the structure works, just formally, is that I am the governor,” Dumont said. “The league wants one person to speak to, so that’s me. But I intend to get the benefit of Mark’s experience and his success. So working with him is actually a benefit to our organization. And that’s how I see it. Nico Harrison is the GM. He is the head of basketball operations. So we all get the benefit of working with Mark, but there’s one GM. That’s Nico.”

Southeast Notes: G. Williams, Micic, A. Williams, Forrest

New Hornets forward Grant Williams was a fan of the franchise while growing up in the city and enjoyed watching Kemba Walker, who has become a close friend and mentor for Williams, according to The Charlotte Observer’s Shane Connuck. In his debut game, he helped his new team win for the first time since Jan. 22.

I always thought it would be at the end of my career, but it’s kind of funny that it happened this way because it allows you to be part of something that can be built around,” Williams said. “You know, new ownership. New team. Bunch of guys who are young and talented. We have a chance to build something special here in the city.

Williams and guard Seth Curry both have local ties, having played high school basketball in Charlotte. Curry is also the son of former Hornets guard Dell Curry.

We just have Mr. Curry in the back right there,” Williams said of Dell, who is now a Bally Sports Southeast TV analyst. “This is something that, as a kid, you always wanted to play for your hometown team. You always wanted to create something special — here. Because, as a kid, you want to get the same joy that you had at that age.

Williams finished with 15 points and eight rebounds in his Charlotte debut.

We have more from the Southeast Division:

  • Like Williams, new Hornets acquisition Vasilije Micic had a good first outing in his new NBA home. Though he played sparingly in Oklahoma City, Micic logged 26 minutes and put up 18 points and nine assists in the Saturday win over the Grizzlies. He admitted he wasn’t expecting to play right away, but he quickly won over head coach Steve Clifford, according to Eurohoops. “He knows where everybody is on the floor. He is a terrific passer and a good pick-and-roll player. And he’s got size,” Clifford said.
  • New Heat two-way guard Alondes Williams turned heads with high-scoring performances in the G League this season, including a 55-point outing on Jan. 7. However, the development of other areas of his game is what ultimately led to the Heat promoting him to a two-way contract on Friday, according to the Miami Herald’s Anthony Chiang. Williams spent training camp with Miami before being waived and suiting up for their NBAGL affiliate, the Sioux Falls Skyforce, to begin the season. “It was more about the overall development,” Spoelstra said. “I think it’s easy to point to some big scoring games. That was really down the list for us. Sure, it’s great that he was able to have those kinds of nights. But it was really about previously playing the role, defending and doing a lot of intangibles and impacting winning while the rest of his game was improving.
  • Hawks guard Trent Forrest hit his 50th active game as a two-way player on Feb. 9 against the Sixers, observes Locked on Hawks’ Brad Rowland (Twitter link). He cannot appear in another game for the Hawks this season due to league rules regarding two-way contracts, unless he’s promoted to a standard deal. However, Atlanta has a full 15-man roster at the moment.

Mavs Notes: Gafford, Washington, Dumont, Williams, Draft Picks

The trade deadline additions of Daniel Gafford and P.J. Washington make the Mavericks a deeper and more explosive team, writes Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News (subscription required). The new-look roster thrived in Gafford’s and Washington’s Dallas debut on Saturday as the Mavs scored a franchise-record 47 points in the first quarter and blew out the Thunder by a score of 146-111.

“There’s going to be nights when we shoot 45 to 47 threes, and there’s going to be nights where we can dominate the paint as we did today,” head coach Jason Kidd said after the win, adding that he’s already thinking about how to manage the frontcourt duo of Gafford and Dereck Lively once the rookie center gets healthy. “… It’s good to have these options. Because we didn’t have these options earlier.”

Luka Doncic, who scored 32 points on 9-of-14 shooting in just 31 minutes, embraced the newcomers, as Townsend writes. Three of Doncic’s nine assists were on baskets by Gafford, whom Luka referred to as the sort of backup center “I’ve wanted for like three years.”

“It means a lot because it gives me the opportunity to show what I’m good at,” Gafford said. “Running the floor. Running the floor. Catching lobs. Rebounding. Screaming. At the end of the day I’m just doing my job and pretty much he was helping me to my job tonight.”

Here’s more on the Mavs:

  • New Mavericks governor Patrick Dumont isn’t just a businessman who views the team as a passive investment, according to Townsend (subscription required), who spoke exclusively to one of the key members of the new ownership group about his basketball fandom, his involvement in the team’s roster machinations, and his hopes to build a new Dallas-area arena and entertainment resort. Townsend shares more of Dumont’s comments on that prospective arena and casino-resort in a separate story.
  • Appearing on 97.1 FM in Dallas with Marc Stein on Saturday (Twitter link via Mavs Film Room), Mavericks general manager Nico Harrison pushed back on a report from Tim MacMahon of ESPN, who said that Grant Williams had “personality clashes” and “rubbed a lot of people the wrong way” in Dallas. “Grant doesn’t deserve the negativity he’s getting on social media,” Harrison said. “… He was a good teammate.”
  • The second-round draft picks the Mavericks received in their trade with the Hornets are Boston’s 2024 pick and the least favorable of the Hornets’ and Clippers’ 2028 picks, MacMahon confirms (Twitter link).
  • If the top-two protected 2027 first-round pick the Mavericks sent the Hornets in that same trade ends up at No. 1 or 2 and Dallas keeps it, Charlotte will instead receive Miami’s 2028 second-round pick, reports ESPN’s Bobby Marks (Twitter link).

Mavs Notes: Kuzma, Newcomers, Williams, Luka, Dinwiddie, Green

The Wizards came close to accepting a trade offer for forward Kyle Kuzma this week, team sources tell Josh Robbins of The Athletic. While those sources didn’t identify the team Washington was talking to, reporting from The Athletic suggests it was the Mavericks. Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN also stated during The Woj Pod on Thursday (YouTube link) that Dallas was trying to get Kuzma from Washington earlier in the week.

The Wizards were seeking a “home-run” return for Kuzma rather than simply a fair offer, according to Robbins, so the Mavericks shifted their focus and ultimately came away with P.J. Washington from the Hornets in addition to Daniel Gafford in a separate deal with Washington.

The trade with Charlotte sent out Grant Williams, whom the Mavericks signed to a fully guaranteed four-year, $53MM contract in a sign-and-trade last summer, giving up unprotected swap rights to their 2030 first-round pick as part of that transaction.

While Thursday’s deals improved their roster, making that sort of investment in Williams, only to trade him several months later after his value had declined, represents a “massive whiff” for the Mavs, according to Tim MacMahon of ESPN. MacMahon stated on the latest episode of the Hoop Collective podcast that there were “personality clashes” involving Williams in Dallas and that the Mavs seemed “determined” to move him.

“He rubbed a lot of people the wrong way,” MacMahon said.

Here’s more on the Mavs:

  • Luka Doncic was “very enthusiastic” about the idea of the Mavs acquiring Washington, according to Wojnarowski, who suggests that was likely one factor motivating Dallas to get the deal across the finish line.
  • The Mavericks have an open spot on their 15-man roster and general manager Nico Harrison indicated on Thursday they’ll continue exploring ways to upgrade the roster, including on the buyout market, tweets Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News. According to Townsend (Twitter link), the belief within the organization about Dallas’ odds of landing Spencer Dinwiddie, who sat near the Mavs’ bench during Thursday’s game in New York, ranges from “cautious optimism to confident.”
  • Tim Cato of The Athletic explores how Washington and Gafford will fit in Dallas, pointing out that – since both players are still just 25 years old and are under contract for multiple seasons beyond this one – their value as trade assets should remain strong if the Mavs decide to move them down the road.
  • Confirming previous reporting, Cato cites league sources who say the Hornets had initially been unwilling to trade Washington to the Mavericks without getting Josh Green back, but relented on that stance in the final hours leading up to the deadline.
  • Sam Vecenie of The Athletic also assesses the Mavericks’ two deadline deals, expressing some reservations about the move for Washington but dubbing the Gafford acquisition a major win.

Mavericks Acquire P.J. Washington From Hornets

6:43pm: The deal is official, according to press releases from both teams. The Hornets’ announcement indicates that the two draft picks they sent to Dallas are second-rounders in 2024 and 2028.

Charlotte’s lone 2024 second-round selection is Boston’s pick, so that will presumably be the one headed to the Mavericks. The Hornets own the Clippers’ 2028 second-rounder as well as their own, so it’s unclear which of those was included in the deal.

The Hornets didn’t announce in their press release which player they waived to complete the one-for-two trade, but an earlier report stated that James Bouknight was being let go.

12:07pm: The Hornets will send P.J. Washington to the Mavericks in exchange for Grant Williams, Seth Curry and a first-round pick, tweets Shams Charania of The Athletic.

The pick will be Dallas’ 2027 selection, which will be top-two protected, Charania adds (Twitter link). In return, the Mavs will get two second-rounders from Charlotte.

Dallas was willing to part with its last tradeable first-rounder so it could keep Josh Green out of the deal, sources tell Marc Stein (Twitter link).

Washington provides Dallas with a reliable frontcourt scorer on a manageable long-term contract. He’s signed through the 2025/26 season with annual salaries of $16.8MM, $15.5MM and $14.1MM and has a bonus of $500K if he plays at least 74 games or 2,400 minutes, which is considered unlikely, according to Bobby Marks of ESPN (Twitter link).

The 25-year-old forward has been with Charlotte since being selected with the 12th pick in the 2019 draft. He was used mainly off the bench this year after starting last season and was averaging 13.6 points, 5.5 rebounds and 2.2 assists in 44 games.

The Mavericks find a way to move off the four-year deal they gave Williams last summer in a sign-and-trade with Boston. He’s making $12.4MM this year and is owed $13MM, $13.6MM and $14.2MM over the next three seasons. Williams, 25, hadn’t provided the fit that Dallas was hoping for and was averaging just 8.1 points and 3.6 rebounds in 26.4 minutes per night.

Curry, who heads to his hometown in the trade, is effectively an expiring contract as his $4MM salary for next season is non-guaranteed. The 33-year-old shooting specialist appeared in 36 games after signing with the Mavericks last summer, but was averaging just 4.3 PPG and playing 12.7 minutes per night.

Scotto’s Latest: Mavs, Washington, Grimes, Pacers, Hornets, Hyland, More

The Mavericks and Hornets have discussed various P.J. Washington trade concepts that include a future first-round pick from Dallas, league sources tell Michael Scotto of HoopsHype.

According to Scotto, if Charlotte is going to agree to take back Richaun Holmes, who holds a $12.9MM player option for next season, in exchange for Washington, the Hornets want that Dallas first-rounder to be unprotected. The Mavs have resisted that idea so far, Scotto writes, adding that Seth Curry has also been part of those trade discussions between the two teams.

While Scotto doesn’t say that Grant Williams has come up in the trade talks between the Mavs and Hornets, he suggests it wouldn’t be a surprise if that’s the case, since Dallas has talked about Williams with multiple teams already.

In addition to Washington, the Mavs have expressed interest in Raptors wing Bruce Brown and Knicks wing Quentin Grimes, among others, Scotto reports. League sources tell HoopsHype that Dallas explored acquiring Grimes in exchange for a package headlined by Josh Green, but New York turned down the proposal.

Here’s more from Scotto, with just hours to go until Thursday’s trade deadline:

  • Although Buddy Hield is considered Indiana’s top trade candidate, rival executives think the Pacers might move some of their frontcourt depth, with Obi Toppin and Jalen Smith among the players believed to be available, Scotto writes. Lottery pick Jarace Walker, on the other hand, remains off limits based on what the Pacers are telling other clubs, league sources tell HoopsHype.
  • The Hornets have expressed interest in Bones Hyland, according to Scotto, who says the Clippers are seeking a pair of second-round picks in exchange for the third-year guard.
  • Despite some speculation that the Nets are interested in D’Angelo Russell, Brooklyn hasn’t had any “substantive” talks with the Lakers and/or Hawks about getting involved in a potential Dejounte Murray trade to acquire Russell, Scotto reports.
  • The Pistons and Grizzlies continue to talk about a possible Killian Hayes trade, with second-round draft compensation serving as the sticking point, per Scotto.

Fischer’s Latest: Wiggins, Paul, Portis, Looney, Kuzma, Stewart, Beauchamp, Hield, Bogdanovic

The Mavericks and Bucks are mulling whether to make a serious run at the Warriors’ Andrew Wiggins, Yahoo Sports’ Jake Fischer reports.

Wiggins’ name has been prominently mentioned in trade rumors, due to his subpar production, the Warriors’ disappointing record and a contract that runs through the 2026/27 season.

Dallas is willing to part with either Grant Williams or Tim Hardaway Jr. for salary-matching purposes to acquire a frontcourt player who can shoot and also make a difference defensively. The Mavs are also willing to include their 2027 first-round pick for the right player, Fischer adds.

As for the Bucks, they’d have to include Bobby Portis to cobble salaries to match Wiggins’ $24.3MM. It’s a tough call for the Bucks, considering Portis’ steady contributions in recent years. Fischer notes that Portis was one of Golden State coach Steve Kerr’s favorites during the FIBA World Cup run with Team USA.

Here are several more interesting tidbits from Fischer:

  • Chris Paul, whose $30MM contract for next season is non-guaranteed, is unlikely to be dealt by the Warriors. Jonathan Kuminga is off limits. However, Kevon Looney and his $7.5MM contract could be swapped out, depending what need Golden State ultimately wants to target. Looney’s contract for next season is only guaranteed for $3MM.
  • The Wizards are unwilling to deal Kyle Kuzma unless they get multiple first-rounders for him. The Mavericks and Kings have known interest but would likely need to find a third team to facilitate such a deal. Washington has made it known it’s looking for draft capital in any trade.
  • Along with previously reported interest in the Hornets’ P.J. Washington, the Mavericks have their eyes on Pistons forward Isaiah Stewart. The latter signed a four-year, $64MM extension last offseason. Dallas also showed interest in Magic big man Wendell Carter but Orlando doesn’t seem inclined to move its starting center.
  • The Bucks are willing to include MarJon Beauchamp and the 2024 second-round pick that the Trail Blazers owe them in trade discussions.  The Bucks and Sixers have also contacted teams that hold plenty of draft capital, such as the Thunder and Pelicans, regarding potential future first-round pick swaps or packages of second-round picks in exchange for extra first-round selections.
  • Speaking of the Sixers, they’re interested in Pacers sharpshooter Buddy Hield. Hield would upgrade their offense and his $18.5MM expiring contract wouldn’t impact their desire to have more cap space than any other team this summer. Picking up more first-round capital, as mentioned above, would facilitate their ability to acquire a wing like Hield or the Pistons’ Bojan Bogdanovic.
  • The Celtics are willing to use their $6.2MM trade exception for bench help. Otto Porter Jr. and Lonnie Walker are among the names Fischer has heard as potential Boston acquisitions.

Stein’s Latest: Wiggins, Mavs, Finney-Smith, Bucks, Wizards

As of Tuesday afternoon, the Mavericks and Warriors weren’t engaged in any active discussions about an Andrew Wiggins trade, Marc Stein reports within his latest Substack article.

Dallas has repeatedly been cited as a team with interest in Wiggins, but sources tell Stein that interest has been overstated. As Stein previously reported, the Mavericks have been prioritizing power forwards over small forwards. Wiggins has played at the four, but is more of a small-ball option there and is a more traditional three.

That stance may explain why one recent report suggested that Dallas also hasn’t shown serious interest in Dorian Finney-Smith, another player who would be a smaller four. According to Stein, P.J. Washington of the Hornets and Kyle Kuzma of the Wizards are two of the players who remain on the Mavs’ radar.

Here’s more from Stein:

  • Speaking of Finney-Smith, Stein and Ian Begley of each confirm that the Bucks have shown interest in the Nets forward. However, Brooklyn has sought at least one first-round pick in return for Finney-Smith and Milwaukee doesn’t have one to trade, so it’s unclear whether the two sides would be able to find common ground. The Nets have been signaling that they’re willing to hang onto Finney-Smith beyond the deadline if their asking price isn’t met, Stein writes.
  • After reporting that the Bucks and Mavericks had exploratory talks about Bobby Portis and Grant Williams, Stein says those discussions didn’t advance any further because Milwaukee isn’t interested in a one-for-one swap and would want additional compensation from Dallas to make a move. Stein doesn’t specify what sort of additional compensation the Bucks sought, but given that they’re in win-now mode, presumably they wanted another rotation player or the sort of draft assets that could be flipped for one.
  • Among potential Wizards trade candidates, Tyus Jones and Delon Wright are “increasingly” viewed as more likely to be moved than Kuzma, says Stein.
  • Like Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, Stein has heard that Kuzma, Trail Blazers guard Malcolm Brogdon, and Pistons forward Bojan Bogdanovic could all stay put this week, though he acknowledges there’s a chance one or more of those teams is posturing to gain leverage.

Stein: Bucks, Mavs Had Exploratory Talks On Portis, G. Williams Trade

Milwaukee and Dallas have held exploratory talks centered around a trade of Bucks forward/center Bobby Portis for Mavericks forward Grant Williams, Marc Stein reports in his latest Substack story.

At this time, it’s unclear if the discussions will become “more serious,” Stein adds.

As Stein writes, Williams has had a disappointing first season with the Mavs, but the Bucks are intrigued by his defensive versatility, with defense a priority for Milwaukee. Portis is certainly a much more accomplished scorer and rebounder than Williams, but he isn’t known for being a stout defender.

Portis, 28, is in his fourth season with the Bucks. The hard-working big man is a fan favorite in Milwaukee, playing an important role off the bench during the team’s championship in 2021.

Portis, who is averaging 12.6 points (on .500/.380/.779 shooting) and 6.9 rebounds in 23.7 minutes across 50 games for Milwaukee this season, earns $11.7MM this season and is under contract through 2025/26, with that final season a player option.

Williams, meanwhile, is averaging 8.1 points (on .410/.373/.729 shooting) and 3.5 rebounds in 45 games (26.5 minutes) this season for Dallas. He’s in the first year of a four-year, $53.3MM deal.

For what it’s worth, if this deal comes to fruition, I’d be surprised if it’s a straight one-for-one swap — I would imagine the Mavs would have to add at least another asset or two.

Mavericks Notes: Luka, Kyrie, Kleber, Williams

Mavericks star Luka Doncic had a frustrating night on Wednesday against Phoenix, earning a technical foul for repeatedly complaining to the referees and then requesting that a heckling fan be ejected, per Tim MacMahon of ESPN. Both incidents came in the third quarter, with the Suns fan leaving voluntarily.

Wednesday marked Dallas’ third straight loss and fifth in its past seven games. Doncic’s frustration boiling over was noteworthy, according to Tim Cato of The Athletic, who says the front office is well aware that it needs to continue to surround its best player with more talent after adding multiple young role players over the summer.

Friday’s matchup with Atlanta went much differently for Doncic and the Mavs, however. The Slovenian scored a franchise-record 73 points, tied for the fourth-highest mark in NBA history, and became the first player to score 70-plus while shooting at least 75% from the field (he was 25-of-33 overall, including 8-of-13 from three and 15-of-16 from the line). He also contributed 10 rebounds and seven assists in 45 minutes during the five-point win (Twitter links via the Mavs and the NBA).

Guard Trae Young said Atlanta tried everything it could to stop Doncic, tweets Kevin Chouinard of

He was hot. He was going. S–t, we were trying everything,” Young said. “We were trying to trap him. We started off with Jalen (Johnson) on him … Sometimes you just have to pick your poison.”

While Doncic said the performance was probably the best of his career, he was more focused on getting a win, per

We’ve been struggling lately,” he said. “Mindset was [to] get a win. We played great.”

Here’s more on the Mavs:

  • Kyrie Irving missed his second straight game on Friday with a right thumb sprain. That marked his 18th missed game of 2023/24, which means he’ll miss out on a $1MM bonus for appearing in 65-plus games, tweets ESPN’s Bobby Marks. The bonus had been considered unlikely after Irving appeared in 60 games last year, Marks adds. The three-time All-NBA guard will also be ineligible for end-of-season awards.
  • Big man Maxi Kleber‘s toe is still bothering him, which is why he sat out Friday’s game after missing 35 games with a right small toe dislocation. As Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News observes (via Twitter), Kleber’s ongoing toe problem is a “significant consideration” for the front office with the trade deadline set for February 8. The Mavericks have reportedly been looking for frontcourt help.
  • Forward Grant Williams had nothing but good things to say about the Mavs in a conversation with Souichi Terada of Williams was acquired from Boston in a sign-and-trade last offseason. “I’m enjoying it,” Williams said of Dallas. “It’s a great organization, great team, bunch of guys that really want to win. It’s an opportunity to compete and step into a role that I didn’t have before. And performance-wise, I definitely want to be better, definitely want to get healthier, want to get in a good frame. But outside of that, I’m just focused on the day-to-day. We have a long season.”