Dallas Mavericks
Nov 21, 2014; Dallas, TX, USA; Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki (41) and forward Chandler Parsons (25) and center Tyson Chandler (6) celebrate during the second half against the Los Angeles Lakers at the American Airlines Center. The Mavericks defeated the Lakers 140-106. Reuters/Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Much of the Dallas Mavericks’ offseason has been about DeAndre Jordan’s decision to spurn them in free agency, which has left the team with a gaping hole at the centre position. Still, the team is poised to play well in the upcoming regular season with the presence of veterans in the team led by the ageless Dirk Nowitzki and other key acquisitions.

Dirk Nowitzki
Apr 28, 2015; Houston, TX, USA; Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki (41) spins to shoot the ball during the fourth quarter as Houston Rockets forward Trevor Ariza (1) defends in game five of the first round of the NBA Playoffs at Toyota Center. The Rockets defeated the Mavericks 103-94 to win the series 4-1. Reuters/Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Jordan, who ultimately chose to stay with the Los Angeles Clippers after verbally agreeing to go to Dallas, will be missed but the Mavericks added a slew of big men that could at least make them respectable in the paint. Dallas signed the trio of Zaza Pachulia, Samuel Dalembert and JaVale McGee in the offseason to pair alongside power forward Nowitzki, who remains a viable offensive option from his position.

Wesley Matthews with Portland in 2011
Portland Trail Blazers guard Wesley Matthews (C) drives to the basket (L) against the Dallas Mavericks during the first half of Game 4 of their NBA Western Conference first round playoff series in Portland, Oregon, April 23, 2011. Reuters/Steve Dipaola

Helping Nowitzki on offense will be shooting guard Wesley Matthews, who signed a long-term lucrative deal with the Mavericks earlier in the offseason. There is no timetable for his return from injury however, and the Mavericks will rely on Nowitzki and Chandler Parsons for offense early in the season.

The 37-year-old Nowitzki averaged 17.3 points, 5.9 rebounds and 1.9 assists last year and his primary support will come from Parsons, who averaged 15.7 points, 4.9 rebounds and 2.4 assists in the 2014-2015 regular season. Matthews averaged 15.7 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.3 assists for the Portland Trail Blazers last season.

Chandler Parsons
Jan 4, 2015; Cleveland, OH, USA; Dallas Mavericks forward Chandler Parsons (25) drives to the basket against Cleveland Cavaliers forward Tristan Thompson (13) in the third quarter at Quicken Loans Arena. Reuters/David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Other key players for the upcoming year are point guards Deron Williams and J.J. Barea and forward Charlie Villanueva.

A top eight finish in the West is viable for the Mavericks, but they need to consistently play well on both ends of the floor the entire year with a tough conference that features a lot of title contenders including the likes of the San Antonio Spurs, Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Clippers and Houston Rockets.

2015-2016 Dallas Mavericks Projected Depth Chart:
Point Guards: Deron Williams/J.J. Barea/Raymond Felton
Shooting Guards: Wesley Matthews/Devin Harris/John Jenkins
Small Forwards: Chandler Parsons/Justin Anderson
Power Forwards: Dirk Nowitzki/Charlie Villanueva/Jeremy Evans/Dwight Powell
Centres: Zaza Pachulia/Sam Dalembert/JaVale McGee

Other 2015-2016 NBA Season Team Previews:
Houston Rockets, James Harden ready for another deep run in the new season
Re-tooled San Antonio Spurs among the favourites to win NBA championship
Memphis Grizzlies to continue ‘Grit N’ Grind’ style in new season

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