Mavs Willing To Give Up On Dennis Smith

Teams talk to each other commonly and inquire about the other’s players equally so. So it’s not unusual you’ll hear that the Dallas Mavericks and the Phoenix Suns discuss the idea of the former trading 2nd year point guard Dennis Smith Jr. to the latter – for what, hasn’t been specified.

Smith is an athletically gifted, but headstrong player and long-standing head coach Rick Carlisle isn’t accustomed to mentoring players who frequently go off script. One of the reasons why Carlisle favors rookie Jalen Brunson over Smith is the former is a steady hand at the wheel next to Luka Doncic. A better compliment to the supreme talent they have growing at shooting guard, last thing Dallas wants is a guard who prefers to have the ball in his hands taking shots away from their superstar.

That all being said, the Brunson / Doncic backcourt is only marginally better than Smith and Doncic…

Dennis Smith / Luka Doncic stats together
687 minutes
100.9 ORtg
105.8 DRtg
– 5.0 Net
56.3 TS%

Jalen Brunson / Luka Doncic (No DSJ)
336 minutes
106.9 ORtg
109.9 DRtg
– 3 Net
55.9 TS%

Brunson and Doncic aren’t particularly athletic, not nearly on the level of Smith so the defensive ceiling for the combo is severely limited. Part of what makes Brunson so seductive is he is very stable and you know who he basically is, a carbon copy of Mark Jackson. If you’re Carlisle, that’s assuring.

For Smith, his comp is the equally unpredictable Steve Francis. You can probably guess Carlisle doesn’t care for guards cut from the same cloth Francis is, even if they are one of the best off the dribble.

Historically, the team giving up on young point guards leads to disastrous consequences for said team. The Boston Celtics learned this the hard way with Chauncey Billups. It takes a long time for guards to carve out their niche in this league – longer than any other position.

Author: sailboatstudios

Hack. Amateur. Professional quitter.

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