5 Obvious, 5 subtle moves Jason Kidd must make to turn Mavs into legit contenders

Washington Wizards v Dallas Mavericks
Washington Wizards v Dallas Mavericks / Sam Hodde/GettyImages
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1. Subtle: Make sure both centers play over 15 minutes every game

During the Dallas Mavericks' game against the Boston Celtics last week, the Mavs played tons of small ball in the second half. Despite Dereck Lively II playing great in the first half, he didn't play much in the second half.

Jason Kidd talked about how Boston struggled against smaller lineups, but this goes back to how Dallas needs to force teams to play their game rather than adhering to their opponent's game, and they were way too fixated on playing small ball with Maxi Kleber.

This came at the expense of Daniel Gafford's minutes, and he didn't play at all during the second half. The Celtics are a unique matchup, and Gafford isn't the best at closing out on shooters, but Kidd and the Mavs must ensure that both centers are making their impact felt in every game.

Both players can make big impacts at any moment, and we saw that with Gafford last night. Gafford finished with 17 points, seven rebounds, and four blocks, and has been the Mavs' new starting center over Lively II for the last two games.

The Mavs went from having no great centers last season to having two great centers this season, and they can't take that for granted.

For all the latest on Dereck Lively II, Daniel Gaford, Jason Kidd, and the Dallas Mavericks this season, stay tuned.