Dallas Mavericks: 5 takeaways from Game 5 loss to the LA Clippers
Dallas Mavericks takeaway from Game 5 loss to Clippers: 3. Can they play MKG?
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist has still only played 18 games with the Mavs. He earned minutes in all five in this series. That should not come as a shock. I made the case during the seeding games that MKG could play an important role against the Clippers.
He is one of the Mavericks’ best defenders. They need him with Kristaps Porzingis out. The Mavs have to play Maxi Kleber exclusively at center. That opens up minutes at the four. Dorian Finney-Smith is the starter, but it is Kidd-Gilchrist or Justin Jackson to clean up the playing time. Jackson cannot guard Kawhi Leonard meaning it has to be MKG.
The problem lies on the offensive end. Kidd-Gilchrist is spotting up in the corners, and the Clippers are not guarding him. They are using his defender to help in the paint and double team. MKG was one of six from the field in game five including missing all four of his 3-pointers.
Are Michael Kidd-Gilchrist’s defensive contributions enough to make up for his lack of offense? It was not in game five. He played well in game four, though. The Mavericks are going to need him if Kristaps Porzingis remains out. Hopefully, MKG keeps the ball moving or attacks the basket when he is open. The jumpers are just not going to fall.
Next: No. 2