The Dallas Mavericks are battling the Utah Jazz in what has been an awesome playoff series through three games. It is hard to pick out just one player to highlight so far. Everyone has stepped up while Luka Doncic has been out with a calf strain. From the heroics of Jalen Brunson to the lights-out shooting by Maxi Kleber, this team is doing something special. However, the play by Dorian Finney-Smith is too good to go unnoticed.
In this series, the 6'7 forward is averaging 12.3 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 1.7 steals per game. The 28-year-old has been leaving it all on the floor in the first three games of the series.
His play might not fill up the stat sheet, but he makes hustle plays that get the bench on their feet. Whether it's a putback dunk or a defensive stop, he not only gets the team back in the game but the crowd as well. He shifts the momentum through his hard work and tenacity.
Dorian Finney-Smith is the glue guy for the Dallas Mavericks
In Game 3, Finney-Smith scored 14 points on 50 percent shooting from the field. He only made two 3-pointers on seven attempts, but one of the two came in the fourth quarter to put the Mavs up by 10 points with two minutes remaining in the game. A few possessions later, he found Spencer Dinwiddie for a three that proved to be the dagger in the Mavs second win of the series.
He provided a spark on the offensive side of the ball, but what really stood out was his defense. The Mavs forced Utah to turn the ball over 14 times, and Dorian Finney-Smith played a massvie part in that. The Jazz were clearly frustrated by the six-year veteran as he finished with four steals, one shy of his career-high.
Finney-Smith has been at the helm of the team defense the Mavs pride themselves on, and he has carried over his strong defensive performance from the regular season to the playoffs. Everyone is involved on defense, and Finney-Smith leads that charge.
His teammates are feeding off of his energy, and the Dallas crowd buzzes when he knocks down a three. The Utah crowd quiets when he throws down a dunk. He is doing everything he can to keep the Mavs in every game. His value to this team is infinite. Without Dorian Finney-Smith, this team would struggle to put consecutive defensive stops together.
The entire team has made their mark on this series without Doncic, but Dorian Finney-Smith is the glue that keeps the Dallas Mavericks together. He will play a crucial role in the team's playoff run whether or not he gets the headlines.