It’s time to continue our series breaking down the Mavericks’ roster.
Rather than just running down the assets and debits of each player, we’re going to approach this year’s roster evaluation a little differently.
With a sound track.
Since the Mavericks reached the Western Conference finals last season and have made it clear that championships are the only measuring stick they will use moving forward in the Luka Dončić era, it’s time to analyze what they need from each player to someday make that a reality, preferably sooner than later.
And there’s a theme song, sometimes more than one – basketball’s version of walk-up music, if you will – for each player.
So here we look at each player (in alphabetical order) and what they must accomplish for the Mavericks to be title worthy. We’ll assume good health for everybody, which is always the No. 1 issue.
Next up is Dorian Finney-Smith.
THEME SONGS: RESPECT by Aretha Franklin and Money by Pink Floyd.
KEY STAT FROM 2021-22 THAT MUST IMPROVE: 11.0 points per game. We all know that offense is a bonus from Finney-Smith, but he has raised his scoring average every season he’s been in the NBA. Can he make it seven years in a row? It would be a cool factoid in his career. It would put him in line to rival Derek Harper, who increased his scoring in eight consecutive seasons to start his career.
BREAKDOWN: Please, can we get a little respect for this guy? He always guards the other team’s best player and usually handles the job pretty well. Yet he never gets any recognition through all-defense teams or, heaven forbid, defensive player of the year votes. That should change, but probably won’t. The good news is that Finney-Smith won’t be bothered by any lack of attention. He really doesn’t care much about it. Especially since he was rewarded where it matters most – in the bank account – with a four-year, $54-million contract he signed in January. That’s when some of his teammates dubbed him “Ferrari Doe-Doe.” Maverick fans know exactly why a guy who was never drafted earned that hefty raise. His defense never wavers. He is a selfless player who doesn’t have to touch the ball a lot to be effective. And his 3-point shooting now is a serious weapon. Nobody leaves him open in the corner. If they do, they pay the price. And that’s what Finney-Smith must continue to do – make opponents pay when they sag off of him and overplay Luka or Spencer Dinwiddie.
NEXT: Josh Green.
Tyler Dorsey: https://www.mavs.com/dorsey-profile/
Luka Doncic: https://www.mavs.com/luka-profile/
Spencer Dinwiddie: https://www.mavs.com/dinwiddie-profile/
Reggie Bullock: https://www.mavs.com/profiles-bullock/
Davis Bertans: https://www.mavs.com/profiles-bertans/