Why the Dallas Mavericks need to find minutes for Jaden Hardy

Dallas Mavericks, Jaden Hardy
Dallas Mavericks, Jaden Hardy / Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
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Why Dallas Mavericks need to play Jaden Hardy more: 2. Diversify skill set

Hardy has been the best player on his team for most of his life. He is immensely talented and a true three-level scorer. The 20-year-old was the number two player in his high school class, but he cannot just be a scorer in the NBA. Hardy needs to diversify his game if he is going to reach his ceiling.

The Mavericks need him to be a secondary playmaker and ball-handler that plays within their defensive scheme. Turnovers and decision-making are significant issues for the 20-year-old. He struggles to read the game and make the proper play. He has the perfect mentor in Jason Kidd. The Mavs head coach was one of the best point guards in NBA history, but Hardy needs playing time to put those lessons into use.

His defensive intensity fluctuates, and he struggles on that end of the floor. Consider this reason number one why Hardy has not played more minutes. Coach Kidd has emphasized defense since taking over in the summer of 2022, and Jaden Hardy must improve here if he wants to play significant minutes for the Mavericks at any point in his career.

What can Jaden Hardy add to his game? Fans saw Josh Green take a massive leap this season, but that was only after he got playing time in his second season. Will Hardy get those valuable minutes and expand his game in the offseason? He must diversify his skill set, but that means getting playing time and using it to improve.