Dallas Mavericks: Why Trey Burke is so important to the team
Trey Burke’s offense and why it is so important to the Dallas Mavericks
Trey Burke’s scoring abilities date back to before his NBA days. As a sophomore at Michigan, Burke averaged 18.6 points per game and provided a memorable performance in March Madness. In the Sweet 16 versus number one seeded Kansas, the Wolverines guard had 23 points and ten assists including hitting a 30-foot 3-pointer to force overtime. Every year Burke’s shot is included in the best NCAA tournament moments.
Burke’s college pedigree made him a top draft pick, but he never lived up to the hype. The 27-year-old has played for five NBA teams. His first three years, he never shot over 42 percent from the field. He also earned a poor defensive reputation.
Trey Burke surprises the Dallas Mavericks in Orlando
It does not seem like anyone expected Burke to be this effective inside the bubble, but nobody in Dallas is complaining.
His ability to break down any defender, get to the basket, and hit a three against the Clippers in the playoffs is reminiscent of the player Burke was in college. If Burke can continue to produce off the bench, the Mavericks depth will be able to contend with the Clippers. Everyone is focused on the Mavs’ lack of big men, but the loss of Jalen Brunson was massive.
Luka Doncic has the second-highest usage rate in the NBA. That contributes to his late game struggles. Before his injury, Bruson served as the captain of the bench unit that kept things under control while Luka rested.
Courtney Lee was a solid defender and shooter who helped the team’s bench before the shutdown. He is not playing in Orlando because of a calf injury.
Without those two guys, bench leadership and scoring was a massive hole for the Mavericks. Burke’s time in Dallas last season helped him have a grasp on the offense. He has exceeded expectations thus far. The unexpected nature of Burke’s rise on a national level feels a lot like J.J. Barea’s impact in the 2011 finals.