Dallas Mavericks: Tim Hardaway Jr. thrives when playing next to Luka Doncic
By Tyler Watts
Dallas Mavericks guard Tim Hardaway Jr. has seen his percentages dip recently. A look at the stark contrast in his numbers with and without Luka Doncic.
Dallas Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic has dealt with two ankle injuries this season. He missed four games from Dec. 16 to 22. Luka suffered a second sprain in practice on Jan. 30. He will be held out for his seventh straight game on Monday night against the Utah Jazz.
The Mavs have weathered the storm with Doncic on the shelf. In his ten games missed, Dallas has won five. That is impressive considering Luka has a usage rate of 37.3 percent. Kristaps Porzingis and the rest of the Mavericks have stepped up to keep the team afloat.
The importance of Luka Doncic is immense. He has the offense running at a historic pace. Doncic is the chief reason why the Mavs have shot up the standings too. His impact goes beyond the 28 points per game or the massive triple-doubles. Luka makes the rest of the Mavericks better. That shines through when looking at the shooting percentages produced by Tim Hardaway Jr.
The 27-year-old guard was viewed by many supporters as a throw-in piece of the Kristaps Porzingis trade. The Knicks wanted off his hefty contract and player option for the 2020-2021 season.
Coach Rick Carlisle and the Mavs have transformed him into an efficient third scorer. THJ has become an elite 3-point shooter too.
His numbers are significantly better with Luka Doncic. Let us take a closer look.
Next: Examining the contrast