Mavericks owner Mark Cuban suggested in a recent appearance on SiriusXM NBA Radio that he expects Wright to start at point guard in 2019-20, The Dallas Morning News reports. "Delon's a downhill guy who can defend multiple positions. We'll work with him some on his shot, but he's a great finisher, he can get to the rim, he'll make the play, he helps make his teammates better, and that's what we were looking for. Because trying to get Luka [Doncic] to guard point guards is not going to work. With Jalen Brunson, he did a great job as a rookie and he'll get better, but his strength still, he's still learning to stay in front of guys. Delon is there. Delon's a passer, a creator, but now 6-foot-5 will be our smallest guy in the starting lineup." While the lineup decisions will ultimately be up to coach Rick Carlisle, Cuban's comments intimate that the Mavericks aren't eager to install Doncic as a full-time point guard, mainly due to his deficiencies on the defensive end. With Cuban going on to suggest that the 6-foot-2 Brunson's lack of size is also a concern, Wright looks like he'll be in the driver's seat to play the majority of the minutes at point guard. While Wright's inconsistent shooting from the field and three-point range caps his scoring potential, his skills as a playmaker and the length he offers defensively could translate to some useful fantasy production. Wright already showed some intriguing potential late in 2019-20 when he received regular run with Memphis, averaging 12.2 points, 5.4 rebounds, 5.3 assists and 1.6 steals in 30.8 minutes per contest.
The Mavericks agreed Sunday to acquire Wright in a sign-and-trade deal with the Grizzlies in exchange for two second-round picks, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reports. Wright's agent, Greg Lawrence, tells Wojnarowski that his client will sign a three-year, $29 million contract. Since Memphis had extended Wright a qualifying offer after his rookie contract expired July 1, the team retained the right to match any offer the combo guard might have received as a restricted free agent. As a workaround to the offer sheet, the Mavericks elected to work with Memphis on a compensation package for Wright, who could challenge for a starting role at either backcourt spot in 2019-20, depending on how Dallas elects to deploy rising star Luka Doncic. With Doncic expected to work between point guard and the two wing spots, Wright is expected to compete with Jalen Brunson, Seth Curry, J.J. Barea (Achilles), Dorian Finney-Smith, Justin Jackson and Tim Hardaway (lower leg) for playing time. Wright should have a safer path to minutes than most -- if not all -- of those players, as his exceptional athleticism should make him a solid fit at either backcourt spot. In 26 games with Memphis after coming over in a trade from Toronto, Wright averaged 12.2 points, 5.4 rebounds, 5.3 assists, 1.6 steals and 0.8 three-pointers in 30.8 minutes per contest.
Wright had the qualifying offer extended to him by the Grizzlies, making him a restricted free agent, Shams Charania of The Athletic reports. Wright saw his role increase dramatically once he was traded to Memphis from Toronto. Once with the Grizzlies, he averaged 12.2 points, 5.4 rebounds, 5.3 assists and 1.6 steals in 30.8 minutes. If he remains in Memphis, his role could be reduced by the addition of Ja Morant. However, it's possible that Wright continues to make strides, as he'll be entering his age 27 season.
Wright's role with the Grizzlies could be impacted by the selection of Ja Morant with the No. 2 pick in Thursday's draft. Wright came over from the Raptors as part of the Marc Gasol trade, and he fared well in 26 games for the Grizzlies, averaging 12.2 points, 5.4 rebounds and 5.3 assists in just over 30 minutes per game. While Wright didn't shoot the ball well from three (26% 3PT), he remains a relatively intriguing longer-term -- that is, if the Grizzlies opt to bring him back as a restricted free agent. With Morant now in the fold, Wright is certainly more expendable, though he's capable of playing off the ball, so it wouldn't be overly surprising if the Grizzlies attempt to bring him back on a new deal.
Wright scored 13 points (3-7 FG, 3-5 3Pt, 4-4 FT) while adding 11 rebounds, 11 assists and three steals in 37 minutes during Wednesday's 132-117 win over the Warriors. The 26-year-old gave a very intriguing glimpse of his fantasy upside next season should Mike Conley get traded, although Golden State was hardly putting its best lineup on the court on the eve of the playoffs. At worst, Wright should have a significant role as a combo guard for Memphis in 2019-20.
Last 7 Games
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