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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3. Derrick Jones Jr.

Another player in the Mavs rotation who is playing for defensive reasons is Derrick Jones Jr. The primary matchup on Paul George, Jones also spent time guarding James Harden as well. When Kawhi Leonard returns, he will also have a large role in trying to slow him down.

However, the 27-year-old forward struggled in his assignment on Sunday. Harden and George both had solid games.

Yet, the real problem with Jones is on the offensive side. His limitations and reluctance as a shooter are causing all sorts of problems for the Mavericks. Similar to how the Clippers guard Kleber, they also leave Jones wide open and he can't make them pay. He went 0/4 from the field and 0/1 from three in 18 minutes, finishing the game with zero points, one rebound, and one assist.

Having non-shooters as your center is one thing. Gafford and Lively not being threats outside the paint is survivable. But when your small forward refuses to take any three-point shots, it messes up the entire rhythm of the offense. Jones improved his shot this season, going up to 34.3% from downtown. Yet, the defenses still don't respect him and that can be a big liability in the playoffs.

This highlights the lack of two-way players on the Mavericks' roster. Jason Kidd needs to find the right balance of sacrificing shooting for defense and vice versa. Either guys like Jones start playing much better soon, or Kidd will have very difficult decisions to make about playing time.

The Mavericks are currently slight underdogs (+116) to win the series vs. Clippers. Head over to FanDuel Sportsbook now to get in on the action. Don't forget to claim your sign-up offer of $150 in bonus bets after your first $5 wager.

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