After the coronavirus pandemic forced the NBA to postpone the draft from June to last Wednesday, the Mavericks, like all teams, had plenty of extra time to scout potential picks.
Dallas also turned to a championship-level source.
The Mavericks’ first-round pick, Josh Green, played last year for Arizona, which hired Mavericks 2011 champion Jason Terry as an assistant coach in May.
While Terry never coached Green directly, the Mavericks consulted with him for insight about the freshman wing whom they expect to contribute as a physical defender and athletic shooter.
“Obviously Jason did not coach Josh, but he’s gotten to know Josh through us as a staff and a lot of the things that we’ve talked about,” Arizona coach Sean Miller said Friday on a Zoom with reporters. “Clearly they utilized Jason in a way that they should have to dig as deep as you can and find out the most on and off the court that you can ... so that you make a great pick.
“Dallas made a great pick.”
Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle recently caught up with Terry, who played for the Mavericks from 2004-2012 and was the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year in 2009, but the two didn’t discuss Green. Instead, a few of the Mavericks’ other evaluators reached out for insight about the 6-6, 220-pound Australian player who emerged as one of the Pac-12′s best defenders last season.
Miller said his staff’s feedback to the Mavericks focused on the 20-year-old Green’s demeanor and on-court potential.
Green’s academic courses “came really easy to him,” Miller said, and he “gets along with all walks of life — old, young, it really doesn’t matter.”
Plus, two shoulder surgeries — on his right in 2018 and left in 2019 — limited Green’s development during a formative period from his senior year of high school through his arrival at Arizona, so “Josh’s upside is even higher than maybe you realize.”
“There’s a lot of work that’s done when you prepare for an NBA draft,” Carlisle said. “You’ve got to do all kinds of background checks. You’ve got to check out everything you can about the program he was at, interaction with teammates, all those kinds of things. This kid checked out extremely well.”