Porzingis Trade Changes Little This Season For Knicks & Mavericks

Friday, February 1, 2019 4:08 PM UTC

Friday, Feb. 1, 2019 4:08 PM UTC

We had a stunning trade in the NBA – and it didn’t involve Anthony Davis (yet). What is the betting fallout of the Knicks sending Kristaps Porzingis to the Mavericks?

The NBA trade deadline is Feb. 7, and it was thought the biggest name possibly dealt would be Pelicans superstar Anthony Davis. The New York Knicks are known to have made an offer for Davis that revolved around their own superstar big man, Kristaps Porzingis.

Either the Pelicans didn’t want Porzingis because he’s still recovering from a torn ACL or they liked other offers better (or simply wait to deal Davis this summer), because the Knicks stunned the NBA world on Jan. 31 by sending the “Unicorn” to Dallas along with Tim Hardaway Jr., Courtney Lee and Trey Burke for Dennis Smith Jr., DeAndre Jordan, Wesley Matthews and two future first-round draft picks. The picks reportedly are a 2021 unprotected one and 2023 protected one.

We aren’t here to talk much about what this might mean this offseason. The Knicks’ motivation was obvious in trading their supposed franchise player: Hardaway and Lee were salary dumps and they now have north of $70 million in cap space to spend this summer. The Knicks’ two top targets are Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. They can afford both now.

Meanwhile, Dallas takes a bit of a risk with Porzingis’ injury, but when healthy he’s a Top-10 talent in the league and could make a dynamic duo with rising superstar Luka Doncic, the clear NBA Rookie of the Year betting favorite at SBR’s top-rated sportsbooks.

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Mavericks fans, when they found out they got Kristaps Porzingis pic.twitter.com/bp5v8KXPrG

— NOTSportsCenter (@NOTSportsCenter) February 1, 2019
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If the Knicks do land two stars this summer in free agency, they probably win this trade. If not, they are big losers. Dallas just got a lot more interesting next season.

But what does this deal mean for the rest of 2018-19? I would say nothing in terms of betting on either the Knicks or Mavericks. Sure, Smith, Jordan and Matthews WOULD make the Knicks better, but it’s a lock that Jordan and Matthews – both in the final year of their contracts – will either be flipped by Thursday or bought out. The Knicks want to keep tanking with eyes on Zion Williamson at the top of the 2019 draft. Can you imagine a 2019-20 Knicks team of Durant, Irving and Zion? That would be fun!

Dallas, meanwhile, has been the best ATS NBA bet in the league this season largely because of Doncic. The Mavs get a couple of solid players in Hardaway and Lee who will slide right into the rotation, but they aren’t upgrades on Jordan/Matthews. Smith had fallen out of favor because he simply didn’t fit with Doncic and the Mavs had a much better net rating with just Doncic on the court compared to Doncic/Smith.

Unfortunately, Dallas likely is too good to go into full tank mode, which is important. That’s because to land Doncic via trade in last year’s draft, the Mavs had to send Atlanta Trae Young and their 2019 first-round pick, which is only Top 5 protected. Dallas isn’t finishing anywhere close to the fifth-worst record in the league and should pick at the tail end of the lottery, which means the Hawks get the pick.

Long story short: Keep betting the Knicks (against) and Mavericks (for) as you have been. Expect a prop on the Knicks’ potential summer signees soon at one of SBR’s top-rated sportsbooks and we’ll have that covered when released.

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