Why Maxi Kleber has been the key to the Mavericks 6-game win streak

Dallas Mavericks, Maxi Kleber
Dallas Mavericks, Maxi Kleber / Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
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Dallas Mavericks, Maxi Kleber
Dallas Mavericks, Maxi Kleber / Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Maxi Kleber is Dallas Mavericks best and most versatile defender

Defensive contributions are not easy to measure. There is no tell-all stat or perfect encapsulation of what a player is producing on that end of the floor. Kleber provides something that no other Mavericks can, though. The 6’10 forward is capable of switching onto the perimeter and is the team’s best option against the likes of LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard, and the other elite forwards.

When the Mavericks snapped the Bulls' nine-game win streak on Jan. 9, Kleber spent four minutes matched up against Nikola Vucevic, three on DeMar DeRozan, and just under one on Zach LaVine, per NBA Stats. The Bulls trio was two of 11 from the field with Maxi as the closest defender.

Defense has spurred the team to six straight wins, and Maxi Kleber is always a key piece of that for the Dallas Mavericks. His ability to switch and defend multiple positions is massive, plus Kleber’s protects the rim and spaces the floor to make him an unsung hero and one of the driving forces of the team’s success. Casual fans may not be talking about him, but that does not make his contributions any less important.

Next. Why the Mavs need to trade for Myles Turner. dark

The Mavericks will look to make it seven straight wins on Jan. 12 against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden. Fans should be sure to tune in and be sure to check back to The Smoking Cuban for all the latest on the team.