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Dallas Mavericks believed Jalen Brunson was a first round pick

Dallas Mavericks Jalen Brunson (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Dallas Mavericks Jalen Brunson (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /
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Dallas Mavericks
Dallas Mavericks Jalen Brunson Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Jeff Haynes/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Dallas Mavericks rookie Jalen Brunson was taken 33rd overall in the 2018 NBA Draft, but the Mavs believed Brunson should have been a first round pick.

Dallas Mavericks fans know Jalen Brunson is a legit NBA player. He is trending towards making the All-Rookie team with his stellar performance since the Mavs trade deadline shakeup.

Since Jan. 31, Brunson is averaging 13.4 points, 3.2 rebounds, 4.3 assists, and 1.3 3-pointers made per game in 29.1 minutes. He is shooting 49.5 percent from the field and 37.0 percent on his threes.

Brunson’s play is a bit unexpected. He was a second-round pick in the 2018 NBA Draft. Brunson was taken 33rd overall by the Mavericks. Was that the right spot? Why did so many teams pass on Brunson? Let us take a look back before having a peek at the rookie’s future in Dallas.

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Looking back

Jalen Brunson accomplished it all on the NCAA basketball court. He played three seasons at Villanova and started 115 of his 116 college games. The Wildcats won two NCAA Championships. Brunson won the Naismith Award, the Wooden Award and was named the Big East Player of the Year after his junior season.

He produced a phenomenal stat line to round out his college career. Playing in all 40 of Villanova’s games, Brunson averaged 18.9 points, 3.1 rebounds, and 4.6 assists while shooting 52.1 percent from the field, 40.8 percent on his 3-point attempts, and 80.2 percent from the free throw line.

Brunson’s father Rick also played in the NBA for nine seasons and went on to be an assistant coach for the Nuggets, Bulls, Bobcats, and Timberwolves.

Jalen Brunson had the production, the accolades, and the bloodlines, so what were the drawbacks that caused him to slip? He was an older draft prospect. The Mavs rookie turns 23 in August. Brunson is listed at 6’3 and 190 pounds. He is about average height for his position and has just a 6’4 wingspan.

Next: Mavs think he was a steal