Milwaukee Bucks Rumors: Dallas Mavericks interested in Nikola Mirotic

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - MAY 17: (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - MAY 17: (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

Poor playoff play and a salary squeeze make Nikola Mirotic‘s future with the Milwaukee Bucks uncertain, and the Dallas Mavericks may offer him a new home.

Of the Milwaukee Bucks’ most notable five outgoing free agents, conventional wisdom suggests Nikola Mirotic is the least likely to return to the franchise for next season.

Viewed as a potential difference-maker when the Bucks acquired him at the trade deadline, Mirotic’s short stay in Milwaukee was significantly disrupted by a thumb injury which kept him out for the end of the regular season, while a severe dip of form in the Conference Finals ultimately led to the Montenegrin logging a DNP-CD in the decisive Game 6.

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Another major obstacle to a potential Mirotic return to Milwaukee is the sheer price that a new deal with the 28-year-old could cost. The Athletic’s Jordan Brenner reported Mirotic could field offers in the $13-14 million range, but which teams could be prepared to cough up that kind of money for the stretch forward?

One potential team is the Dallas Mavericks, based on reporting by Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News.

According to Townsend’s reporting, although Mirotic won’t be a top priority for the Mavericks, he joins Patrick Beverley as a player who they have meaningful interest in.

"“A source said that while the Mavericks and Beverley plan to meet at the start of free agency, the time and site of that meeting had not been set as of Monday night.A source said the Mavericks also have shown interest in 6-foot-10 small forward/power forward Mirotic, but that he is further down their wish list than Beverley.”"

Diving deeper into the root of that interest, or at least how the path to a deal with either Beverley or Mirotic may be smoother for the Mavs, Townsend noted the strength of the franchise’s relationship with NBA power agent Bill Duffy, of whom Mirotic and Beverley are both clients.

Those who will remember the Bucks’ spate of Excel Sports’ additions a couple of years ago will understand that such relationships aren’t to be underestimated in terms of influence on player movement.

In recent days, Marc Stein of the New York Times has reported on the Mavericks’ increasing interest in luring Kemba Walker to Dallas, which in itself demonstrates the franchise’s intent to make a splash in free agency.

With Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis already in place, Mirotic would make for a nice addition to the Mavs’ Euro corps, particularly as an opening for a near seven-foot sharpshooter has recently opened in Dallas with the retirement of Dirk Nowitzki.

Those are incredibly big shoes to ask a player such as Mirotic to fill, but it does leave a very clear and obvious fit for him in Dallas.

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How Mirotic’s free agency plays out remains to be seen, as it’s entirely possible the Bucks could decide to renounce his rights ahead of making their offers to Khris Middleton, Malcolm Brogdon and Brook Lopez.