5 Studs from Mavericks' blowout Game 4 win over Celtics

Dallas Mavericks, Dereck Lively II, Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks, Dereck Lively II, Luka Doncic / Tim Heitman/GettyImages
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2. Stud - Tim Hardaway Jr.

Before Friday night's Game 4 of the 2024 NBA Finals between the Dallas Mavericks and Boston Celtics, Mavs fans were infuriated with Tim Hardaway Jr. in Game 3.

Hardaway Jr. finished with zero points in 19 minutes of action, and his lack of production was a huge problem for Dallas. They needed someone to step up as a third scorer next to Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving, but no one did.

Friday night was a different story, and the Mavs bench excelled. Although he didn't play until the second half, the Hardaway Jr. of the past returned as he finished with 15 points in 12 minutes of action while shooting 5-7 from downtown.

Everyone knows that Hardaway Jr. is capable of getting extremely hot at times, but it had been a while since fans had seen him shoot the ball that well. It was a pleasant change to see Hardaway Jr. dialed in from downtown once again, and this game had to have injected some confidence into him after struggling for so long.

It's unclear if Kidd will roll with Hardaway Jr. again in Game 5, but he definitely showed that he can play in this series when he is at best. There was no pressure in his minutes considering what the score was, and if the Mavs continue to get this Hardaway Jr., things could get very interesting for the Celtics.