Mavericks' forgotten bench player is missing piece in playoff puzzle

New Orleans Pelicans v Dallas Mavericks
New Orleans Pelicans v Dallas Mavericks / Sam Hodde/GettyImages

The Dallas Mavericks suffered a loss to the LA Clippers on Sunday 109-97. The Mavs were down 56-30 at halftime, as the team scored eight points in the second quarter. The team tried to make a late rally in the second half, but it wasn't enough as Dallas couldn't climb out of their hole.

Some of the issues can be traced back to the Mavs' poor shooting and production of role players. Dallas failed to find a rhythm when it came to knocking down shots. The team shot 38.8 percent overall and knocked down 30.3 percent of their 3-point attempts.

MVP candidate Luka Doncic struggled to find his shot as he 4-12 from the 3-point line. His teammates also struggled to provide any help. Everyone not named Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving combined to score 33 points.

The bench was part of the issue, as the non-starters combined for 19 points. Tim Hardaway Jr. was the leading scorer off the bench with six points.

Josh Green is missing piece in Mavericks' playoff puzzle

However, one player who could have been valuable off the bench was Josh Green. The Mavs' shooting guard played nine minutes in Game 1. He combined for four points, two steals, and one block within that time.

Green was also one of three players who had a positive rating on the team's plus or minus rating. The four points he scored were based on hard drives to the basket and getting to the free-throw line, something the team desperately needed.

So why was Green snubbed of minutes?

It is unclear why coach Jason Kidd failed to play Green more. One reason could be his poor shooting this month. The Mavs' guard shot 21.1 percent in three games this month. Green went 1-8 during the team's final game of the season.

Green had a great season before he suffered an ankle injury that sidelined him for 12 games. The Mavs guard averaged 11.7 points per game and 1.5 steals in February. He is also tied for the team's leading leader in steals.

So, it's clear that Green's production is the type of impact the Mavs needed on Sunday. He is an all-around player who can get it done on both sides. His impact is what separates him from other players on the team. Whenever he is having a bad shooting game, Green isn't afraid to drive to the basket and earn his points the hard way.

Could the Mavs make an adjustment on Tuesday to include Josh Green more? What are the chances he takes over some of Tim Hardaway Jr.'s minutes?

Either way, its clear Green should be seeing more playing time.

Stay tuned for the latest updates on Josh Green and the Dallas Mavericks playoff coverage.