The Dallas Mavericks did something different Tuesday night. During their home opener, all 15 players—the entire roster—saw playing time in the 116-106 win against the Houston Rockets.
All 15 players rarely get on the floor unless the game is a blowout. It’s almost unheard of in a close contest like Tuesday. According to Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd, the decision was premeditated after he consulted with a council of three players.
“Everyone who participated, which was the whole team—which is kind of cool on opening night,” Kidd said. “All 15 guys played. If we could have played the two-way [players], we would have played them too. This came to me this morning through the council that we have. Those players that I talked to thought this was a great idea. So, I was with it.”
Internally, players knew about the decision that they would all see minutes. However, Kidd did not elaborate much about the structure of the council or who was on it Tuesday night.
“We’ll let the council stay the council,” he said. “It’s a communication thing. Talking to those three guys before, they wanted to do it. It’s a cool thing. We always talk about 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15 as part of the team and they tend not to get to play, but they come to work everyday like the starters or the rotation guys. I think this shows what kind of character, what kind of guys we have in that locker room, which is really, really cool.”
Kidd previously mentioned on a podcast that the council consists of Luka Doncic, Kristaps Porzingis, and Tim Hardaway Jr.
Throughout the postgame press conferences Kidd and Doncic did little to shed light on the workings of Mavericks’ new inner circle. Doncic confirmed its existence and that he thinks it’s a good idea.
“It will help a lot,” he said. “The more you do, the more you talk the better. Especially these meetings on the court, off the court, talking solves things.”
According to Doncic the first “official” meeting of the council took place Wednesday morning. The players that make up the council spoke with each other on an individual basis during training camp. They also had some say in Dwight Powell being the fifth starter, Doncic said.
So now, the word is out about the Mavericks’ players leadership council and the sway they possess. For the sake of everyone, let’s hope it turns out better than Rome’s First Triumvirate.