How can the Dallas Mavericks get Tim Hardaway Jr. going? 1. Easy buckets
Last season, Hardaway Jr. shot 215 times within eight feet of the basket, which was 23.6 percent of his total field goals. His percentage from inside has dropped to 16.3, despite connecting at a similar rate.
This is the biggest issue for THJ. He had more success attacking closeouts and getting inside for easy buckets. Hardaway Jr. is taking nearly one less shot per game within eight feet. For a player that relies so heavily on his jumper, getting inside for an easy bucket can be a fantastic way to build confidence and get things rolling.
Those opportunities have not been there this season, and the team’s offensive changes are partially to blame. Luka Doncic draws the defense into the paint frequently, but this season, Kristaps Porzingis and whoever is playing the five for Dallas are often occupying position inside. It has limited the opportunities to attack closeouts and is preventing THJ from getting to the rim as frequently.
The Dallas Mavericks need to find a way to manufacture a few easy buckets inside for Tim Hardaway Jr. each game if they want to get him going. The 29-year-old is still averaging 14.5 points per game, but improving his efficiency is important for the Mavs. Their defense is dramatically better, so returning into the top ten in offense makes Dallas a team to avoid in the postseason.
Keep an eye on THJ’s play in the second half of the season. The best is still yet to come. If he gets hot, the Dallas Mavericks are going to be difficult to stop, so stay tuned.