The Dallas Mavericks have had a fairly fluid rotation this season, using everyone on the bench in different situations. Justin Jackson was in the rotation, but has been on the outside the last few games.
The fluidity that is the Dallas Mavericks rotation has been very interesting this year. It started with the starting unit taking on many different forms at the beginning of the season, before graduating to the bench where there are nine players who are worthy of minutes in today’s NBA. Unfortunately for them, a team would never work with a 14-man rotation.
For that reason, Rick Carlisle and the Mavs coaching staff has decided to go in a number of directions with that second rotation, usually consisting of somewhere between four and seven players. On different occasions, that group of players has included Justin Jackson and on others it did not.
Currently, Jackson is on the outside looking in. Jackson is currently eighth on the team in three-point percentage, even though that is his primary goal when in the game. His confidence appears to be waning and his defense is not where it needs to be either. Eventually, Carlisle decided he needed to pull the plug and has been inserting Ryan Broekhoff instead of Jackson.
Broekhoff has been shooting the ball much better than Jackson, currently at 53.3% from beyond the arc, only behind Courtney Lee and J.J. Barea. He has stepped up in some key situations and has been pretty decent on the defensive end as well. There is really no reason to believe that Jackson should be playing ahead of Broekhoff the way they are currently playing.
Until either Broekhoff slows down or Jackson shows that he deserves his time back, this could be the rotation for the time being. The issue is, the expectations were certainly higher for Jackson coming into the season.
Jackson was supposed to be, at the very least, a trade asset for the Mavs this year. A young, shooting wing with good defensive instincts should be a commodity in this league, but Jackson is a few years into his NBA career without any proof that he can be a consistent player off the bench for any team.
He has had good moments. His game has improved along with his versatility, but the consistency is a pressing issue that could haunt him for most of his career. If there was ever a time for him to figure this thing out, this season could be that time.
I really hope Jackson can fight his way back into the rotation. The Mavericks could use some more wing depth and can never have too much three-point shooting. He just needs to prove that he is worthy of it first.