Dallas Mavericks: How Do the Olympics Affect Andrew Bogut’s Perception?
One of the newest members of the Dallas Mavericks, Andrew Bogut, has played some stellar basketball at the Rio Olympics so far. Is his great play changing the perception Mavs fans have of the Australian center?
The Dallas Mavericks have had their hands full this summer with trades, re-signings, and acquisitions from across the league. The players added from reigning Western Conference Champions, Golden State, may be the most exciting new additions for the team.
That fact has not been more accurate than it is now, thanks to Andrew Bogut. Bogut has been competing in the Olympic games for his home country, Australia, during the last few weeks. His play has been so good that Australia is sitting at 4-1 with a chance to medal in the Rio games.
After showing great play night in and night out, we have to wonder, are we getting an early look at what is going to happen in Dallas next season? Andrew Bogut has not just been good in these Olympics. He has been dominant.
Let’s take a look at how Bogut has impacted the court on both ends.
It is no secret that the Dallas Mavericks brought Andrew Bogut in as a defensive anchor for the team. As one of the premier shot blockers in the game, Bogut has made his presence known in the middle.
Bogut’s rebounding has also been stellar in his career. With a career per game average of 8.9 rebounds, including 6.4 defensive rebounds, he has made his case for an above average rebounder in the league.
In the 2016 Rio Games, his rebounding has diminished some, which is expected in the different format. Having 8 fewer minutes per game than the NBA will make a difference in the statistical impact, which should explain the decline in rebounds.
However, even with the fewer minutes of playing time, Bogut has stuck with his above the rim presence on defense. Career averages of 2 blocks per game in the NBA have translated to 1.8 in the Olympics. That includes 3 blocks against heavy favorites, Team USA.
No matter the case from these Olympics, Andrew Bogut is expected to be a defensive powerhouse for a desperate Dallas team this coming season. Blocking and rebounding will be big parts of his game and will be needed working alongside Dirk Nowitzki.
Surprisingly, being on a team with players like Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green makes offense a little bit less important for players like Bogut. For that reason, his offensive game has taken a downturn since joining the Warriors.
That does not mean that his offensive abilities have left him completely though. During his time with the Milwaukee Bucks, Andrew Bogut averaged 14.4 points per game. That includes a 2009-10 season in which he averaged an impressive 17.7 points per game.
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Since joining the Warriors in 2012, however, his scoring average has diminished to only 9.5 points per game. That does not necessarily mean that he has lost his abilities altogether, but rather he may be looking for a system to better fit his skill set.
That was a hope in the back of the minds of many Mavs fans until recently when Bogut has shown that it is a very real possibility. One could argue that the competition level in the Olympic games is considerably lower than that of the NBA. But, Bogut has faced off against 3 NBA centers in Rudy Gobert (France), Nikola Jokic (Serbia), and DeMarcus Cousins (USA).
13 points per game against these high quality centers is no easy task whether at the Olympics or otherwise. Add that to the fact that he is shooting a whopping 82.8% from the field, and you can see just how well he is playing.
Bogut is also averaging 4 assists per game for his team, even better than his career average in the NBA. These passing numbers should go up even more with Dirk at his side in Dallas.
Next: Dallas Mavericks: Sorting Out the Backcourt
No matter what you think of Andrew Bogut and what he can bring to the Dallas Mavericks this season, it is impossible to deny his dominance in the league so far this year. The more games he plays, the more obvious it is that the Mavs have gotten a steal at the center position.