Develop: Jaden Hardy
Hardy surprisingly slipped into the second round of the 2022 NBA Draft, and the Mavericks traded back in to select him 37th overall. He was the number two player in the class coming out of high school, but an up-and-down season with the G League Ignite tanked his draft stock. Dallas was eager to select him, and the 6’4 guard proved plenty of teams wrong as a rookie.
The 21-year-old can flat-out get buckets. His ball-handling and playmaking need time to develop, but his scoring ability is unquestionable. Over the final 16 games of last season, Hardy averaged 13.4 points, 2.9 rebounds, and 2.4 assists in 21.1 minutes per contest. The 6’4 guard looks to be the team’s sixth man of the present and future.
Hardy is a hard worker that will keep improving. There were some frustrations in summer league as he was asked to play as the primary creator. The 21-year-old is not best suited to that role. He creates well for himself and can score from anywhere on the floor. The Mavs will let him attack as they attempt to harness his playmaking ability.
The Dallas Mavericks have young talent to be excited about. Luka Doncic is just 24 years old, and the team has put pieces around him that could blossom. Can they get the best out of them? Stay tuned to find out.