"Plan A is still to fix this."
The Dallas Mavericks are reportedly hoping to keep Dennis Smith Jr. on the roster, despite recent rumors that the team was looking to trade him before the February 7 deadline.
According to ESPN's Tim MacMahon, the Mavericks are "optimistic that they can reconcile and move forward" with DSJ, and are insistent they won't trade him unless they get good value in return. "Plan A is still to fix this," a team source told ESPN.
Smith, who was selected 9th overall in the 2017 NBA Draft, averaged 15.2 points and 5.2 assists during his rookie campaign but his numbers have dropped to 12.6 and 3.9 so far this season.
The 21-year old point guard has missed four straight games, three of which were due to what the team announced as back soreness. The most recent came after his agent call in sick for him ahead of Tuesday's practice and Wednesday's loss to the San Antonio Spurs.
Another important piece of the Smith trade rumors is the fact that Dallas' rookie sensation Luka Doncic has thrived, averaging 20.3 points, 6.7 rebounds and 5.1 assists per night.
According to ESPN, Doncic and Smith average only 100.9 points per 100 possessions in 687 minutes this season, while Doncic and rookie guard Jalen Brunson average 106.9 in 328 minutes and Doncic and J.J. Barea were 112.6 in 232 minutes.
Through 44 games this season the Mavs are 20-24, which has them among the bottom three teams in the Western Conference. That said, they're just four games back of the eighth-seeded Utah Jazz.
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