Over the course of an 82-game NBA season, players will go through numerous hot and cold streaks. When shots are falling, scoring averages rise, but whenever the iceman commeth those numbers plummet back down to Earth. To track this, this weekly series will document key Mavericks players and tell you if their recent play has them trending up or down.
Dennis Smith Jr.
Dennis Smith Jr. has been undergoing an interesting transition this season as he moves back in the pecking order and begins to play off-the-ball more often than he’s even been asked to do in his career at any level. As a result, the second-year point guard has seen his numbers dip somewhat through his 18 games this season.
Such was the case this week in which the Mavs played just twice and Smith averaged 11.5 points on 41% from the field, including 2/9 from three. He also registered 8 total rebounds and 8 total assists between the two games. This places his scoring, his shooting percentages, and his assists numbers all below his season average, while his rebounding numbers were up slightly. As result, his stock is currently trending downward.
This Week: 11.5 PPG, 4 RPG, 4 APG, 2.0 SPG, 0.5 BPG
Season Averages: 13.8 PPG, 2.8 RPG, 3.9 APG, 1.17 SPG, 0.39 BPG
Harrison Barnes’ week featured a fantastic performance in LA in which he scored 29 points in 34 minutes of action. Connecting on 53% of his field goal attempts, including 4/6 from beyond the arc, he helped keep the Mavericks in a game in which the team’s leading scorer, Luka Doncic was held to just 6 points. When paired with his respectable outing in Houston two days prior, Barnes’ stock is most certainly rising.
This Week: 21.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 1.5 APG, 1.0 SPG, 0.0 BPG
Season Averages: 17.6 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 1.3 APG, 0.9 SPG, 0.2 BPG
Luka Doncic experienced one of the most uneven week’s of his young career, a feat made all the easier by the fact that Dallas played just twice over the span. In Houston, he dazzled, scoring 20 points in 24 minutes on 54% shooting and 3/7 from beyond the arc. That includes a 40-foot pullup to beat the buzzer and send Dallas into the half with a 74-56 lead on the road. His performance was so strong, in fact, his services weren’t necessary through much of the later stages of the contest. And then the road trip moved to LA…
In his rematch with his idol, LeBron James, Luka Doncic suffered easily the worst offensive night of his young NBA career. Scoring just 6 points on 2/13 shooting and 0/5 from three. But while his buckets almost entirely eluded him, Doncic found ways to contribute in other areas, chipping in 6 boards, 5 assists, 3 steals, and 2 huge blocks on LeBron James in a row early on.
While it was just one night, it was also one of two games that week, and learning now that Doncic also suffered some kind of hip injury and missed Sunday’s contest with the Western Conference-leading Los Angeles Clippers at the AAC, his stock must be considered to be on a downward trend for the moment.
This Week: 13.0 PPG, 6 RPG, 3.5 APG, 2.0 SPG, 1.0 BPG
Season Averages: 18.4 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 4.2 APG, 1.1 SPG, 0.4 BPG
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