Dirk Nowitzki is probably the first player that pops into everyone’s minds when thinking about the Dallas Mavericks. The German superstar played his entire 21-year Hall of Fame career in Dallas. Likewise, modern day Mavs fans would never forget the date June 21, 2018, the day they drafted their next face of the franchise in Slovenian Sensation Luka Doncic.
Mavs fans will forever remember Nowitzki for carrying Dallas through the first two decades of the millennium, and they certainly hope that Doncic will banner them for the next two decades as well. However, there are a number of notable names that get lost in the history books. Here are the five best Mavericks that you probably forgot about.
Sam Cassell was a rock solid floor general throughout his 15-year NBA career. He started his career with the Houston Rockets, where he won back-to-back titles during the Michael Jordan-less years. Cassell later bounced around a number of teams, before become a major contributor during his stints with the Milwaukee Bucks, Minnesota Timberwolves, and the L.A. Clippers.
One of his more forgettable stopovers is with the Mavericks. Dallas acquired Cassell in a multi-player deal which sent All-Star guard Jason Kidd to the Phoenix Suns. Cassell, however, played just a total of 16 in Dallas, starting in 13 of them.
Most basketball fans would remember Lamar Odom as one of the key pieces of the Los Angeles Lakers’ back-to-back championship run in the 2009 and 2010. In the aftermath of a disappointing finish to 2010-11 season, however, the Lakers looked to widen their championship by acquiring All-Star point guard Chris Paul.
The league, however, vetoed the trade. The deal involved sending Odom to the New Orleans Hornets. Odom went on record saying he felt “disrespected” after learning about the infamous vetoed deal publicly. Thus, he himself requested for a trade to a contender after the botched CP3 deal.
Los Angeles traded the reigning Sixth Man of the Year to the defending NBA champion Dallas Mavericks. Unfortunately, Odom could not replicate the production he had with the Lakers to the Mavericks. His numbers dropped to 6.6 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 1.7 assists, after averaging 14-9-3 with Los Angeles the year before. On the court, he often looked lost and even butted heads with owner Mark Cuban.
After playing 50 games, Odom and the Mavs decided to mutually part ways. Odom, meanwhile, issued an apologetic statement to Dallas fans for how his stint with the Mavericks went.
In his prime, Alex English was one of the top wing scorers in the NBA. He saw his most success with the Denver Nuggets, where he averaged 25.9 points in 10-plus seasons, including eight straight All-Star appearances and a scoring title in the 1982-83 season.
English became a free agent following the 1989-90 season, where his production dipped to 17.9 points. The Nuggets opted to let him walk. At 36 years old, he signed a one-year deal with the Mavericks.
At this point of his career, English was no longer the scoring machine that he was in his prime. He played mostly a bench role and his scoring average dropped to 9.7 points. This ended up becoming his final season in the NBA.
Playing for the Phoenix Suns for majority of his prime, Amare Stoudemire spent a good chunk of his career as a nemesis of the Mavericks. He along with two-time MVP and former Mavericks star Steve Nash and the rest of the Suns terrorized Dallas with their deadly pick-and-roll and “seven seconds or less offense.” Likewise, the Mavericks also had their number in the postseason once.
Midway through the 2014-15 season, however, Stoudemire found himself donning a Mavericks uniform. At this point of his career, the former Rookie of the Year had already lost most of the athleticism that made him an 6-time All-Star through the 2010’s. Nonetheless, he still provided solid minutes for them off the bench. In 23 regular season games, he averaged 10.8 points and 3.7 rebounds in just under 17 minutes per game.
Dennis Rodman is one the most controversial figures in the history of the NBA. Despite this, he made his money with his hustle and intensity on the floor and led the league in rebounding seven times in his Hall of Fame career.
Following his bizarre transformation after leaving the Pistons in the 1993 off-season, teams often had a difficult time dealing with Rodman. The Chicago Bulls eventually found a way to contain him, turning him into one of their key pieces in winning a three-peat from 1996 to 1998. However, others, including the Mavericks, did not find success.
This includes failed stints with the San Antonio Spurs before joining the Bulls, the Los Angeles Lakers after the Bulls dynasty ended, and finally with the Mavericks in his last NBA season. Dallas signed the 38-year old power forward in the hopes that he would be able to help the up-and-coming Mavs make a return to the postseason.
However, Rodman didn’t provide the veteran leadership they needed from him, despite averaging 14.3 rebounds per game in 32 minutes off the bench. His erratic behavior rubbed the organization the wrong way. He ended up playing just 12 games with the Mavs.