Aussies in NBA: Bogut can't help these Mavericks much
Ladies and gentlemen, the Dallas Mavericks. Proud owners of one of the best win records in the league over the past decade and a half, with a title in 2011 as the cherry on top, they now sit at the very bottom of the whole league. Yes, worse (by one fewer win) than the Philadelphia Process Trusters (shout out to The Ringer's Jason Concepcion, who I got this from).
Andrew Bogut is still my dude and I remain as happy as I was during preseason and when his trade confirmed that he would be a Mav. He's definitely played his part, but with Harrison Barnes the only other player who's been both healthy and consistently playing well, Bogey's contributions are pretty much inconsequential to the bigger picture of winning games.
That's not meant as a criticism of him, mind you. Averaging 10 boards per game (his best in the past three seasons) and posting a defensive rating of 95.1 aren't bad at all. The only issue is, for Dallas to be anything but terrible right now, Bogut has to be more than just an expert role player, which is something that's probably too much to ask from a 32 year old who's had multiple serious injuries.
Put simply: the Andrew Bogut we saw with the Golden State Warriors the past couple years is exactly the player he is now, and it wasn't much to do with his limited role and minutes in that star-studded system.
Once again, this isn't criticism. Bogut has been performing as-advertised. You want rebounding? 10 boards per game.
You want assists?
You want some alley-oop action? Say no more fam.
Or how about some good ol' Aussie hustle (with an assist to boot)?
Heck, the blind pig play has officially touched down in the Dallas Fort Worth area, and the only reason you haven't heard of it is cos Stephen Curry isn't the one receiving the ball.
(Well, that and it didn't end in a made shot, but then that's how the season has been so far.)
Everything Bogey has been the past few years on a championship and record-breaking team, he has been with the Mavericks. So he's totally still my dude and you'll have no bellyaching from me on him. He's doing the best he can and you can't ask anything more of him. It's just that it isn't enough to pull this Dallas team up from utter mediocrity.
In the end, perhaps the best way that Bogut can help the Mavs is with a trade.
Like I said, he's still an expert role player, with the emphasis on expert. He'd be a big boost to any contender's title hopes, and although he won't fetch a ransom, being 32 years old and in the final year of his contract, anything to
stock up the Mavericks' asset cabinet and
free up playing time for the young bigs Dwight Powell and A.J. Hammons
definitely helps the team.
This proposed trade idea isn't the best because it doesn't really help the team going forward, but it's likely the first in many improbable trade ideas being bandied about as Dallas navigates unfamiliar waters, ones not seen since the bad old days of the 90s. While I'd love to have the Aussie veteran in Dallas blue for the rest of his career, he does seem like the best candidate for a trade if this team is to start building for the future.
Let's wait and see how the next few months turn out. Much as I hate it, I'm preparing myself for a Bogut departure before season's end. He certainly deserves to be in a winning situation.