3 Studs, 2 duds from Mavericks' commanding Game 3 win over Timberwolves

Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic, Derrick Jones Jr.
Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic, Derrick Jones Jr. / Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
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2. Dud - Daniel Gafford

Following a great game in Game 2 as he finished with 16 points, five rebounds, and five blocks, Daniel Gafford followed it up with a worse performance as he finished with five points, three rebounds, and three blocks in Game 3.

Gafford's struggles out of the short roll continue, and he never seems sure of what he wants to do when he catches the ball in the high post. This often ends with a bad pass or a missed shot at the rim, and his lack of composure in this area has been getting exposed.

This shows how great Dereck Lively II has been for the Mavs, as his passing and play out of the short roll has been a huge strength of his all season long, and Gafford has to put some consistency together if Lively II is going to miss time with his neck sprain.

Lively II's neck sprain caused Dwight Powell to see some high minutes in this game as he played 99 minutes and finished with 99 points, and this is not ideal. Powell has not been part of the playoff rotation at all, and Gafford playing better will help lessen the blow of Lively II being injured.

Gafford's physicality and paint presence on defense have not gone unnoticed, but his offensive game as of late (outside of a couple of dunks) has been hard to watch. He made up for his slow start with a couple of big plays on both ends of the floor, and that could lead to him having some positive momentum going into Game 4.