3 Dallas Mavericks on Thin Ice After Shocking Game 1 Loss

The Dallas Mavericks suffered a shocking blowout loss to the Clippers in Game 1. These three players are on the hot seat going forward.
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
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2. Maxi Kleber

In his prime, Maxi Kleber was one of the most underrated 3-and-D power forwards in the league. He could guard multiple positions on the defensive end and hit shots on the other end to give Dallas the ability to play switchable, small-ball lineups. However, injuries have taken a toll on the 32-year-old lately as he missed over half of the regular-season games in the last two seasons.

The decline in his game was further evident in Game 1 against the Clippers. He is still a solid defender and gave Dallas decent minutes as the small-ball center on Sunday. In fact, the Mavericks were +6 in his 27 minutes.

However, his offensive game is completely non-existent right now. He was 1/5 from the field and 0/3 from downtown. Considering that he only made 34.8% of his three-point attempts this season, the Clippers were leaving him wide open to pack the paint. This caused significant spacing issues for the Mavericks.

Dallas not having enough shooting threats and spacing was one of the main reasons they struggled to score. They shot 30% from three as a team and failed to crack 100 points. Kleber was unfortunately a big reason for that.

Unless he starts hitting shots, forcing the Clippers to guard him, Kleber will find it difficult to play extended minutes. Because, unlike Gafford and Lively, he isn't a lob threat or a finisher inside, either. The frontcourt minutes will be one of the biggest questions coach Jason Kidd will need to answer.