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Mavericks, GM Donnie Nelson mutually part ways

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It's been a day of change in the NBA, and the Dallas Mavericks aren't about to be left behind. The team announced on Wednesday that it and longtime general manager Donnie Nelson have mutually decided to part ways.

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"I just want to thank Donnie for his 24 years of service to this organization," team owner Mark Cuban said in a statement released by the team. "Donnie has been instrumental to our success and helped bring a championship to Dallas. His hard work, creativity and vision made him a pioneer. Donnie will always be part of the Mavs family and I wish him all the best."

Nelson has worked for the team since his father, Don Nelson, was named coach and general manager in the late 1990s. He drafted Dirk Nowitzki and traded for Steve Nash not long after he was hired in 1998, bringing in two future MVPs in a three-team trade. Nelson is also responsible for assembling the core of players who would bring the Mavericks their first and only NBA championship in 2011. 

Donnie Nelson answers questions during a news conference at the American Airlines Center.
Dallas Mavericks general manager Donnie Nelson and the team mutually agreed to part ways on Wednesday. (Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports)

Sports bettor reportedly gained power within Mavs organization 

While the Mavs' inability to get past the first round of the playoffs since their 2011 championship could be a factor in Nelson and the team deciding to part ways, it might go deeper than that. 

Nelson's ouster comes just a few days after The Athletic published a report about tensions within the organization since Cuban hired sports bettor Bob Voulgaris as director of quantitative research and development in 2018. Since then, he's reportedly been involved in nearly every high-level decision that the Mavs have made, usurping power from executives like Nelson. 

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