The Dallas Mavericks acquired Tim Hardaway Jr. as part of the Kristaps Porzingis trade back in 2019. He was viewed by many as the Knicks trying to dump salary in the deal, but THJ has been outstanding since coming to Dallas. He improved his outside shooting and efficiency to become the Mavs' third scorer and a crucial shot creator.
The Mavericks re-signed Hardaway Jr. this summer on a four-year deal worth $74 million. The 6’5 wing has earned every penny of his new deal, and it was an important move to bring him back. Dallas will be looking to take the next step this season, but THJ will need to take another leap to make that a reality.
Sports Illustrated released the first part of their top 100 NBA player rankings on Sept. 20. Hardaway Jr. cracked his way onto the list. Let us take a closer look at the ranks.
Dallas Mavericks wing Tim Hardaway Jr. breaks into SI top 100
Hardaway Jr. ranked 96th on the list this year after going unranked last season. Fans could argue that THJ deserved to be ranked a bit higher. Derrick White has never averaged more than 15.4 points per game and ranks as a below-league average defender. Hardaway Jr. is also a more efficient scorer, despite White having the edge in playmaking ability.
Ranking players is never easy, but it was fantastic to see Tim Hardaway Jr. get the recognition of being inside the top 100. Teammate Kristaps Porzingis was also on the first part of SI’s list. It will be interesting to see where superstar Luka Doncic ranks later this week.
Will THJ’s role changes under new head coach Jason Kidd? Can Kidd help Hardaway Jr. continue improving his efficiency and add to his off-the-dribble game? It will be one of the many storylines for Dallas Mavericks fans to watch this season, so stay tuned.