Dallas Mavericks top early objective: Build up Tim Hardaway Jr

(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /

On paper, the Dallas Mavericks didn’t do much to improve as a team. Sure, they added Christian Wood to the roster. And yes, they added a legit big in JaVale McGee in free agency. But they lost Jalen Brunson (perhaps you heard of that) who was a pretty big reason they achieved so much success last season.

To call the offseason a push, is fair, especially when you consider how strong the West got between last season and this coming season.

Besides organic improvement from within, the best chance of the Mavs improving over last season involves Tim Hardaway Jr. Absent throughout most of last season, Hardaway can be seen as an offseason addition. He didn’t get to play with Spencer Dinwiddie and could help carry some of the load Brunson left behind.

One thing’s for sure: Tim Hardaway has to shoot better to have any value on this team.

In 42 games last season, Hardaway averaged just 14.2 points (a six year low for him). The point totals weren’t really the problem, it was the shooting percentage. His 33 percent from deep was dreadful and it pushed his overall shooting percentage to .394.

A good team can’t have a sub-.400 shooter yeeting up a dozen shots per game and expect to win. They need efficiency and consistency from their 30-year-old wing

The Dallas Mavericks need to build up Tim Hardaway’s value to flip him at the trade deadline.

At this point in Timmy’s career, he is what he is. THJ is an okay defender and a streaky shooter. He’s a good teammate who can be an asset in the right situation, but that situation probably isn’t here in Dallas. At least not these days.

At this point, the best hope is one of two things:

  1. Give THJ a small and well defined role off the bench.
  2. Or facilitate him, set him up to succeed, and sell while his stock is high.

I prefer option 2 because at over $19 million dollars this season, I want more than a role player you have to keep on a leash. If the Dallas Mavericks can get Tim back to producing those 2020-2021 shooting percentages, they could have a tradeable asset on their hands.

Keeping his minutes low but opportunities strong, will build his value on both ends of the court. Not only could it help the Mavs win games in the short-term, but it could also help them shed an ugly contract which helps them down the road. Heck, even if they don’t win some games because of this strategy early, if they build up his value, it’s worth it in the long run.

This certainly isn’t meant to be anti-THJ piece or anything. Hardaway is a good player, he’s just on  bad contract and on a team who needs to progress. And if he tries to reclaim the same old role, he could have negative effects on an otherwise efficient offense.

Love the Mavericks? Join our writing team! Find Sport DFW under “locals” and apply below

Sports Dallas Fort-Worth
Sports Dallas Fort-Worth /

Want your voice heard? Join the Sports Dallas Fort-Worth team!

Write for us!

What do you want to see happen with Tim Hardaway, MFFL?