Dallas Mavericks

Nicknaming the Dallas Mavericks’ bench units

Mavericks owner Mark Cuban wants a catchy nickname for his team’s bench unit. We’ve got him covered.

Recently, Mark Cuban laid down the challenge — find a name for the Mavericks’ lovable, hardscrabble, effective bench unit. It’s been a long time since Mark has taken our advice but we’re glad he came to us with this. There are a couple of issues with this project, the first of which is that there hardly is a bench unit. Outside of Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis, any person might be a bench player at any time. It’s like The Purge but for starter’s minutes. I’ve never seen The Purge.

Anyhow, here are our top five suggestions:

1. The Ninja Turtles: This one makes a lot of sense because Seth Curry is cool but rude, Maxi Kleber is a party dude, and Dorian Finney-Smith loves pizza. Also, they hate giant anthropomorphic brains. But mostly, it conveys the energy they have — just a bunch of ninjas, led by a lovable rat, ready to mess some stuff up. Lots of guys they compete with wear tall socks.

2. Four Liverpudlian Lads: One thing we can say about the bench mob — they’re always in perfect harmony. Sometimes, Tim Hardaway Jr. or Delon Wright will compose his own song — a little “Something in the way she moves,” if you will. Justin Jackson is just happy to be drumming. But when they get on the stage together, they make sweet, sweet music and nothing ever goes wrong for any of them. It all works out fine. Never read a book.

3. The Verve Pipe: When I was young — which is to say the offseason — I knew everything. The Mavs rarely ever took advice. But I’m guilt-stricken, I’m sobbing, because I just thought this team would really struggle outside of Luka and Kristaps. I was wrong. I won’t be held responsible — there’s no mechanism for holding people responsible for having bad sports opinions — but that doesn’t mean I don’t think about it now. How I never really wept.

4. The Revengers: Remember, in Thor: Ragnarok, when Thor made a transparent knockoff of the Avengers but nobody had heard of the Avengers so he got away with it? That’s the energy here. Nobody’s ever heard of any of these guys. I never have, and I’m writing a column about them! But the end result was they did a great job, and in the process, introduced a number of cool new characters into the MCU like Valkyrie, that angry chief woman who blew up, and Jalen Brunson. And those guys — well ultimately they destroyed their entire planet and then got totally messed up by Thanos, but the point is, you know, dunks. Or something about time travel, don’t ask me questions. That zombie wolf thing? Was that Jalen Brunson? One of them is Jalen Brunson.

5. The YMCA: It is fun to stay at the YMCA but more importantly, if you go to the YMCA, you will see a 65-year old man there with a knee brace the size of a small planet. His name is Bruno and he was in the war, then he walked on at Seton Hall. In those days, no one owed a television — it was the war. He will not get back on defense, but he will yell at you the whole time, and then he will absolutely fade you with a hook shot that somehow you can’t block even though he never even tries to jump. That’s the experience of Kleber, Curry, DFS, Tim Hardaway, Jr., and Justin Jackson landing eleven 3s right on your chops, as the Denver Nuggets found out the other night.

Next: Kendrick Nunn is making noise as the Heat’s latest reclamation project

And finally, Bonus Sixth Thing:

6. The Justice League: Okay, remember how Batman vs. Superman was legitimately the worst movie of all time? It had that weird “MY MOTHER IS ALSO NAMED MARTHA” thing? And it just really underscored the fact that the MCU was wiping the floor with DC like DC was nothing more than some mop? You remember. But actually the Justice League movie itself was not that bad. Last year the Mavs were awful with almost all of the same players except Seth Curry, Porzingis, and Delon Wright. Now just by adding one other player who actually deserves to start in the NBA, they’re suddenly pretty good! And people are sleeping on them because that’s what happens after you create the worst movie of all time. And sometimes Luka gets all angry when you wake him up and seems like he’s going to destroy the world but then he casually disposes of the main bad guys and so on and so forth.

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