Dallas Mavericks advantage over New Orleans Pelicans: 3-point shooting
The Pelicans are becoming a trendy sleeper pick in the Western Conference with Zion Williamson healthy. The 6’6 forward did not play last season because of a foot injury, and he has played just 85 total games since being drafted in 2019. New Orleans made the playoffs without him last season, but keeping Zion healthy and on the floor is key to them becoming legitimate contenders.
The Pelicans were one of the worst 3-point shooting teams in the league last season. They made just 10.6 per game, which ranked 28th, and they were 27th in 3-point percentage. Zion is not a 3-point shooter, and the Pels makes decreased after acquiring CJ McCollum last season.
The Mavericks were top ten in 3-pointers made during the regular season before embracing small ball and leading the league in the postseason. Dallas made 15.8 3-pointers per game and shot 38.0 percent on their way to the conference finals.
The Pelicans will be near the bottom of the league in 3-pointers made and percentage this season, and Dallas will have a significant edge whenever the two teams match up. Fans saw in last year’s series versus the Suns, trading two for three is a recipe for success for the Mavs, and it could be the key to dominating the season series versus New Orleans.