The Dallas Mavericks were established in 1980 and since have witnessed their days of glory as well as limbo. They remained competitive in the mid-1980s, being part of five consecutive playoffs between 1983 and 1988 behind the young core of Mark Aguirre, Derek Harper, and Rolando Blackman which included a berth in the Western Conference finals in 1988.
The early 90s went terrible when their star players left Dallas- either via free agency or trades. But the second half of the decade saw the rise of the Mavericks with young talents like Dirk Nowitzki, Steve Nash and Michael Finley getting aboard before Mark Cuban bought the team in 2000.
By 2005, the team was among the best in the Western Conference and made its first Final appearance against the Miami Heat who became the NBA champions that season. As the team built in the upcoming years and amazing players like Jason Terry, Jason Kidd and others were getting to be a part of the franchise. Finally in 2011, the Mavericks became the NBA champions for the first time by getting their revenge on Miami Heat, their 2006 finals nemesis.
The Mavericks or the Mavs as they are fondly called, have won three divison titles (1987, 2007, 2010), two conference championships (2006, 2011) and one NBA championship (2011).
The Dallas Mavericks is now being led by Dirk Nowitzki (who is in his 21st and his final NBA season), the Wonderboy- Luka Doncic, Kristaps Porzingis, Mavs veteran J.J. Barea and others. Now let's take a look at the top players to feature for the franchise since 2000:
#5 Michael Finley (1996-2005)
After being named to the 1995–96 NBA All-Rookie First Team and finishing third in Rookie of the Year voting, Michael Finley came to Dallas with a lot of expectations as the team was re-building from ruins of the 90s’ disaster. In his first season with the Mavericks he led the team in scoring, assists and steals.
The trio of Finley, Steve Nash and Dirk Nowitzki was one of the dominating “Big 3” of the late 90s. Finley was versatile in scoring with good shooting ability and inside the paint domination, was swift on the defensive end and could rebound the ball. He was arguably as important to Dallas' resurgence as any other player, including Nowitzki.
He was selected as an All-Star in 2000 and 2001. He remained a clutch player for the Mavs till he was waived by Dallas in 2005. Then he signed with the San Antonio Spurs where he played for the next six seasons and won his only NBA championship in 2007. He played the remainder of 2009-10 season with the Boston Celtics before announcing his retirement.