DALLAS – Center DeAndre Jordan had just finished getting dressed following Tuesday’s 106-98 win over the Los Angeles Clippers when he dove into a discussion about the value of the Dallas Mavericks having point guard Dennis Smith Jr. on their roster.
“He’s probably one of the fastest guards in the league,” Jordan said. “Nobody can keep up with him, let alone stay in front when he has his mind to it. We’re lucky to have him.”
Smith missed six games with tightness in the middle of his back and an illness before returning in time for the win over the Clippers. In that game, the second-year veteran scored 17 points, grabbed a season-high tying eight rebounds and distributed four assists while hearing applause from the American Airlines Center sellout crowd of 19,466 all night.
“I’m glad he’s back,” said Jordan, who had 13 points, 16 rebounds and four blocks against the Clippers. “I’m glad he’s not sitting any more.
“He’s fast and athletic and can push the pace and the tempo for us, which is what we need. It’s great to have him back.”
In his heart of hearts, Jordan believes there’s enough room for rookie Luka Doncic and Smith to play together, adding that a team can never have enough playmakers.
“Dennis has been great for this franchise,” Jordan said. “This is his second year, but he had a great season last year, and him and Luka are the future of this franchise.
“They’re both young great players and they’ll continue to get better, so I’m excited about it because we all should be. Luka has been playing at a high level and when those guys are playing together, we’re that much better, so hopefully we can keep this up.”