Mavericks: 5 players who have changed dramatically this season
2. Kristaps Porzingis
Looking at Kristaps Porzingis’ stats from this season do not tell the entire story. At first glance, his percentages dropped across the board, the scoring dipped, and the blocks went down. It is important to remember that Porzingis was going to struggle to begin this year. He had not played in an NBA game since Feb. 2018. KP was also adjusting to new teammates, a different system, and an altered role in Dallas.
KP was the top option during his All-Star season in New York. He shifted to being number two in Dallas. Porzingis also had more rebounding and defensive responsibilities. He is averaging 9.5 rebounds per game this season which is 2.3 a night over his previous career-high. KP anchors of the Mavs defense in a way he was not asked to do in New York.
The biggest changes came on the offensive end, though. The Mavericks have asked him to post up less. Porzingis did it 24.8 percent of the time in his final year with the Knicks. His post ups are down to 13.4 percent this season.
KP is shooting more three too. In his All-Star season, the Unicorn attempted 42.9 percent of his field goal attempts from ten feet to the 3-point line. That number has dropped to 24.2 percent with the Mavericks. He has traded in the mid-range jumpers for threes. He is shooting 7.1 per game this season which by far a new career-high.
Kristaps Porzingis was finally hitting his groove when the suspension happened. He knocked off the rust, regained his confidence, and began playing like an All-Star again. Long-term the changes will improve KP even if the numbers do not suggest that this season.
Next: No. 1