Dallas Mavericks: Jalen Brunson sets new career-high against Pacers
By Tyler Watts
Dallas Mavericks rookie Jalen Brunson drew a start against the Indiana Pacers on Feb. 27 and dropped a new career-high 24 points in the victory.
The Dallas Mavericks returned home to face the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday evening. The Mavs were riding a five-game losing streak, so they made some changes to their starting five. They put Jalen Brunson back in the unit, and it paid dividends.
The Mavericks ultimately secured a 110-101 victory on Feb. 27. Brunson was a key part of that win. He had 24 points, three rebounds, five assists, three 3-pointers made, and five steals in 34 minutes of action. Brunson shot nine of 14 from the field and made three free throws.
The 24 points is a new career-high for Brunson. It is also part of a larger trend developing since the Mavs made two trades. Brunson had two games with 15 or more points scored before Dallas made the Kristaps Porzingis trade. Since then, he has scored 15-plus three times in ten games. Brunson also has two 13-point performances in February.
The rookie hit a crucial shot that helped propel the Mavericks to victory against Indiana. Luka Doncic set it up, and Brunson nailed a step-back 3-pointer with just over a minute to go that pushed the lead to eight points. Relive the moment below courtesy of the Mavs official Twitter.
That is a clutch shot for a rookie. Remember Brunson is 22 years old and was part of two NCAA championship teams at Villanova. He has a bit more experience in clutch moments than most players his age.
Fans worried about Brunson’s shooting early in the season as well. That should be far from your mind now. Bobby Karalla sent out a Tweet with the stats from Brunson’s shooting during his rookie campaign.
Fans should be excited because Jalen Brunson should only get better from here. The Dallas Mavericks did a fantastic job drafting him in the second round. Brunson figures to be a key rotation player for the next decade-plus. Finding that in round two of the draft his never easy. Mavs will never forget the 2018 draft after securing Brunson and Luka Doncic.
Keep an eye on his development in the final 21 games of the season. Will Coach Carlisle give Brunson more minutes? Does he take another step forward and solidify himself a 25-plus minute per night role next season? Only time will tell.