Dallas Mavericks: Tim Hardaway Jr. continues to be a consistent scorer
By Tyler Watts
Dallas Mavericks newcomer Tim Hardaway Jr. is settling in nicely after the trade by proving to be a consistent scoring option in Dallas.
The Dallas Mavericks made a blockbuster deal on Jan. 31. The Mavs acquired Kristaps Porzingis from the New York Knicks for three starters and two future first round picks. Dallas also had to take on the undesirable contracts of Tim Hardaway Jr. and Courtney Lee in the deal.
With the news that Porzingis won’t play this season, Mavericks fans thought the deal was more of a future move. Hardaway Jr. had other ideas, though.
Continues to score
THJ struggled to settle in during his first two games in Dallas. Since he is averaging 18.3 points per game over the last seven. That includes five 20-plus point performances. THJ has scored over 20 in three straight and may be the second scoring option behind Luka Doncic in the Mavs last 21 games.
None of this should be a massive surprise. Hardaway Jr. is only 26 years old and was scoring over 19 points per game this season for the Knicks. He is not an efficient scorer, but THJ can get buckets.
Hardaway Jr. has filled in the scoring load that Harrison Barnes vacated in his move to Sacramento. The new Maverick may be doing it with a little more flare, though. Here is a monster dunk that THJ threw down on Feb. 25 against the Clippers courtesy of the Mavs official Twitter.
Hardaway Jr. figures to start and play 30-plus minutes per game for the remainder of the season. Expect him to continue scoring in the 19 points a night range.
After this year, THJ has one more guaranteed year at $18.15 million. Then, he has a player option in 2020 at $18.98 million. That is a hefty price tag for an inefficient score-first player.
The Dallas Mavericks front office would love to move Hardaway Jr. That figures to be difficult without attaching draft picks or another talent. GM Donnie Nelson could get creative to make it happen, but only time will tell if they are motivated to make that type of trade.
New Dallas Mavericks guard Tim Hardaway Jr. is settling in nicely as a secondary scoring option for the team. He has scored 20-plus points in three straight games with no signs of stopping now. THJ is also attempting 7.7 3-point attempts a night for the Mavs, but still shooting only 33.3 percent.
The Mavericks return to the court on Saturday evening when they host the Memphis Grizzlies. Mike Conley will be running the show for Memphis, but Luka Doncic and Hardaway Jr. figure to counter with scoring punch the Grizzlies will struggle to match. Tune in for what should be a fun game inside the American Airlines Center.