Dallas Mavericks: Maxi Kleber helps Germany to 2 wins in WC Qualifying
By Tyler Watts
Dallas Mavericks big man Maxi Kleber started and chipped in on two wins for the German National Team over the weekend in 2019 World Cup qualifiers.
The Dallas Mavericks second-year big man Maxi Kleber is going to have to earn his minutes during training camp this season. The Mavs have a plethora of frontcourt options and Kleber may find it difficult to replicate the minutes he saw as a rookie.
Kleber is unlikely to play significant stretches at the three leaving just 96 available minutes for him. When you start breaking it down, DeAndre Jordan likely play at least 31 minutes a night, pencil Dirk in at 24 and Harrison Barnes likely sees at least half (17) of his 34 minutes at the four. That leaves just 24 minutes to split between the likes of Dwight Powell, Salah Mejri, Ray Spalding, and Kleber.
That goes without mentioning players like Dorian Finney-Smith and Luka Doncic getting a few minutes each game at the four as well.
It will not be easy to secure a consistent workload for Kleber. He needs to play well in training camp and the preseason to earn that role.
Maxi Kleber got a jumpstart by playing with the German National Team over the weekend. They had two games in qualifying for the 2019 World Cup. Let us take a look at what Kleber produced.
Germany dominates Estonia
Germany kicked off this part of the qualifying with a Sept. 13 game against Estonia. The Germans brought it from tipoff and raced out to a 25 point lead at halftime. They cruised to an 86-43 victory.
Kleber started the game, but given the blowout nature, he played just over 20.5 minutes. He produced 11 points, four rebounds, one 3-pointer, and a 21 plus/minus on two of four shooting from the field. Kleber also connected on all six of his free throws. It was an all-around dominating team game for Germany.
Victory in OT thriller
The German National Team wrapped up this set of games against Israel on Sept. 16. It was a difficult game that went back-and-forth. Ultimately heading to overtime before Germany pulled away and won 112-98 on Sunday.
Kleber saw a much heavier workload in this contest playing nearly 37 minutes of action in the 45-minute game. He produced 13 points, eight rebounds, four assists, three 3-pointers made, and a steal on five of nine shooting from the field. Kleber also hit a buzzer beater to send the game to overtime which you can see here.
The German National Team has more qualifying games, but they are all during the NBA calendar. The good news is Germany has already secured a place in the 2019 World Cup thanks to their undefeated record through eight games. Expect to see Kleber on their squad for the competition in Aug. 2019.
Dallas Mavericks big man Maxi Kleber started and helped Germany to two victories in World Cup qualifying. The wins secured the Germans a place in next year’s competition. Tunisia also qualified this weekend, so at least two Mavs should be participating in the 2019 FIBA World Cup. Stay tuned for plenty more on the competition as it draws closer.
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