Dallas Mavericks: Harrison Barnes is coming back around
By Kohl Rast
Harrison Barnes missed the first few games of the season with an injury that hampered him even when he did get back on the court. Over the last few games, however, he has started to look like himself again.
Don’t let last night’s game fool you into believing that Harrison Barnes has not made strides to get back to his old form this year. The Dallas Mavericks had a tough stretch of games earlier in the season when they lost 6 in a row. During those 6 games, Barnes was out for the first but struggled shooting the ball in the next 5.
Barnes started the season shooting 35% from the field and 29% from three. That is not a serviceable percentages from the guy that many expected to lead the team in scoring once again. Since that time, however, (and before last night’s game), Barnes had raised his percentages to nearly 47% field goal and 40% three-point.
Barnes has also been active on the glass, grabbing over 5 boards per game so far this year. His rebounding numbers will likely continue to go up as he learns to play better with one of the best rebounders in the game in DeAndre Jordan. This team is still learning how to play together, something people don’t fully realize when criticizing the Mavs.
HB is currently averaging 16 points per game this year and that number should continue to increase as long as he continues to shoot. It hasn’t been very easy seeing Barnes go from a game like he had against the Warriors, shooting 50% on his way to 23 points, to last night with 10 points on 21% shooting and only grabbing 1 rebound.
The inconsistencies that have been evident with Barnes’ game so far this season are not something we need to be worried about just yet. He is going to be great for the Mavs once again this year, because that is the type of player he is. He has proven over and over that he can be relied on and that won’t change this season.
The Mavs as an organization are still trying to figure out just what Luka Doncic can do on the basketball court. They are still getting used to having a big man threat in DeAndre Jordan and they are still learning what Dennis Smith Jr. needs to be the most effective player he can. Barnes is one of the only guys that adapts well to what is around him, but it still takes time.
I am looking forward to seeing what Barnes does the rest of the season. I expect him to get back to his normal numbers and become a key part of this team going forward. The injury is past and Mavs fans can start to look forward with him once again.