Dallas Mavericks chairman Mark Cuban admitted his two stars—Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis—have the occasional dust-up, but he isn't too concerned about their relationship.
Speaking to 105.3 The Fan on Thursday, Cuban compared the two to the way Dirk Nowitzki and Jason Terry interacted before they duo went on to achieve sustained success.
Said Cuban on the K&C Masterpiece show:
"On the court they are fine. I mean, coaches coach, and coach kind of runs the show so everything gets worked out on the court. That's not to say there aren't dust-ups, because there are.
“I'd compare it to Jet and Dirk. If you remember, when we first got Jet, Dirk was not a fan. Dirk did not like him. And we lost in a playoff series because Jet made a mistake against [Steve] Nash and that just made it even worse. They weren’t best friends at the beginning, but they grew to like each other and grew to be great friends and that’s just part of the process when you’ve got young kids who are growing up. It took forever before Dirk and Jet did anything off the court together. A long time. Yeah, I mean, KP and Luka get along fine. It’s just that they’re different people. They like to do different things.”
Doncic and Porzingis have played just 84 games together as various injuries to both stars have caused a bit of a setback in their development together. That's just two games more than a full NBA regular season. Cuban believes with a bit more time, their relationship on the floor will only get better.
The Mavs have a 50-34 record in regular-season games when Doncic and Porzingis are both on the floor. Whatever dust-ups have taken place certainly haven't disrupted the team's trajectory.
At 32-26 on the year, the Mavs are first in the Southwest Division and tied with the Portland Trail Blazers in the Western Conference standings for the sixth seed in the playoffs.
They'll have to do even better down the stretch in order to avoid the new play-in tournament. Only the top six teams in each conference are guaranteed a berth in the first round of the postseason. The next four clubs will all battle against each other to fill the final two slots.
Either the Mavericks will be able to pull ahead of Portland or be forced to sweat it out in the play-in tournament. In both cases, it's incumbent on Porzingis and Doncic to keep refining their relationship on the floor for Dallas to succeed.