Dallas Mavericks

Mavs fans should go to home-opener to see Doncic’s debut and stay for Jimmy Butler drama

Minnesota Timberwolves players, from left, Jimmy Butler, Tyus Jones, Andrew Wiggins and Karl-Anthony Towns sit it out in final couple minutes during the second half of Game 4 in an NBA basketball first-round playoff series Monday, April 23, 2018, in Minneapolis. The Rockets won 119-100, and lead the series 3-1.
Minnesota Timberwolves players, from left, Jimmy Butler, Tyus Jones, Andrew Wiggins and Karl-Anthony Towns sit it out in final couple minutes during the second half of Game 4 in an NBA basketball first-round playoff series Monday, April 23, 2018, in Minneapolis. The Rockets won 119-100, and lead the series 3-1. AP Photo

The Mavericks’ home-opener against the Timberwolves should be entertaining.

Ticket’s for Saturday night’s game are cheap.

Yes, Harrison Barnes and Dirk Nowitzki are likely to miss their second straight game. And owner Mark Cuban’s team didn’t exactly look sharp in a 122-100 blowout loss to the Suns on Wednesday night in Phoenix.

But there are two very good reasons to find your way to the American Airlines Center on Saturday evening.

First, the rookie. Luka Doncic has and will continue to experience growing pains in his first NBA season. But the preseason and season-opening game showcased some of his potentially elite skills.

But the more entertaining reason might have to do with the away team.

The resentment and anger between Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor, head coach Tom Thibodeau and star forward Jimmy Butler is very real.

And the situation has become a circus. Butler has criticized teammates such as Andrew Wiggins and Karl-Anthony Towns, as well as coaches and ownership.

He made a huge scene in a preseason practice before storming out. Butler conducted an interview with ESPN hours later.

The former Chicago Bull has also demanded a trade. And the organization has reportedly tried to make that happen.

The forward hasn’t played hardly at all since last postseason, but he still managed to record 23 points and seven rebounds in 32 minutes during his team’s 112-108 opening-night loss to the Spurs in San Antonio on Wednesday night.

Still, Butler has always been an emotional player and his current set of circumstances might amplify that attitude.

Fans should go to the home opener to see a potential franchise player begin his career in Dallas.

But they should stay to watch a mercurial talent like Butler. Will he yell at his teammates or coach? Could he throw inanimate? Could he do both of those things and still drop 30 points?

We’ll find out on Saturday night.

Dirk Nowitzki discussed the possibility of him "coming off the bench" for the Mavericks this season.

Related stories from Fort Worth Star Telegram

  Comments