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Dallas Mavericks: Should they bench Josh Richardson?

Dallas Mavericks Josh Richardson Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
Dallas Mavericks Josh Richardson Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
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Dallas Mavericks, Josh Richardson
Dallas Mavericks Josh Richardson Luka Doncic Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

What are the Dallas Mavericks options in the starting five without Josh Richardson?

Expect coach Rick Carlisle to shorten the Mavs rotation in the playoffs. He will go with eight players, except when he needs someone to change things up. Carlisle switched his starting five in the playoffs last season. Maxi Kleber played off the bench in the seeding games before starting all six games in the first-round series versus the LA Clippers inside the bubble.

Luka Doncic, Kristaps Porzingis, and Dorian Finney-Smith are locked into the starting five when healthy. Carlisle has options for the other two spots. The matchup could play a factor in the playoffs, but let us assume that he wants to use KP at his best position. That leaves Tim Hardaway Jr., Jalen Brunson, Kleber, Trey Burke, J.J. Redick, and Richardson as possible starting options. THJ’s recent play has earned him a starting nod.

It is not starting that matters, but who closes games on the floor. Richardson has done that in just two of the Mavericks’ last five games. They have been without KP and Maxi in those contests as well. On May 6 against the Nets, Carlisle went with Doncic, Brunson, Powell, Finney-Smith, and Hardaway Jr. to finish up the crucial win.

Brunson and Hardaway Jr. are the leading candidates to start over JRich in the playoffs.

Next: Case for starting JRich

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