3 weaknesses of the Dallas Mavericks which can be used against them in the 2021-22 NBA season

Dallas Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic

The Dallas Mavericks head into the 2021-22 season with renewed optimism and mostly the same squad with minor tweaks. Their biggest addition in the offseason came in the form of Jason Kidd, who has taken over head coaching duties from Rick Carlisle.

Kidd has been credited with shaping players such as Giannis Antetokounmpo and will look to utilize that knowledge as he aims to get Dallas Mavericks' own unicorn in Kristaps Porzingis back to his previous form. Mavs fans hope their new head coach can work wonders with the 7'3' Latvian and recreate the magic Kidd and Dirk Nowitzki had during their title run with Luka and Kristaps.

Luka Doncic is expected to have an MVP season and showed glimpses of it during the Olympics as he single-handedly helped a less talented Slovenia side finish fourth when there were doubts if they could even qualify for the tournament. Luka will do his bit and produce magic night in and night out for the Mavs, but it is yet to be seen if his supporting cast will aid in making a deep playoff run.

Kidd's arrival will change the Dallas Mavericks' offensive outlook as witnessed in the first preseason game against the Jazz. There will be more touches in the post and less reliance on jump shots which will allow Luka to force a lesser number of shots with Porzingis getting better looks from the post.

Dallas Mavericks are still a work in progress

At the same time, the Dallas Mavericks aren't without their faults. They had several issues last year and with a largely similar core this time around, there are a couple of weaknesses that other teams can take advantage of. Let's look at them now.

#3 Rebounding

Dallas Mavericks center Boban Marjanovic fights for a rebound against the Clippers
Dallas Mavericks center Boban Marjanovic fights for a rebound against the Clippers

The Dallas Mavericks will have to improve their rebounding numbers to create second-chance opportunities. Dallas ranked in the bottom half of the table for rebounds in the regular season and dead-last for the same category in the post-season. Rebounds might not seem that important during the regular season but can decide playoff ties as one putback or offensive rebound leading to an open shot can change the trajectory of the game.

The Mavs' big men, led by Porzingis, will have to do a better job at battling for rebounds if they are to have a chance against teams with elite big men such as the LA Lakers and Utah Jazz who can dominate in the paint if given the smallest chance.

The addition of former OKC center Moses Brown will help in that regard as the youngster averaged 8.9 rebounds in 43 games with the Thunder.

Here's what Moses Brown did to the #Celtics in March in OKC...

Also Read: What is Luka’s Current Contract

#2 Mediocre Defense

Luka Doncic attempts to block a shot
Luka Doncic attempts to block a shot

Dallas Mavericks' defensive efficiency ranked in the bottom half of the table last season as they gave up 112.3 points per 100 possessions. The Mavs' lack of rebounding played a part in having lower defensive efficiency as they gave up more second-chance points. Their defense pegged them back despite them having a top-10 offense which at times was firing on all cylinders.

The Mavs addressed their defensive inefficiency by signing scrappy defenders such as Sterling Brown and Frank Ntilikana, who are bound to help them improve.

Frank Ntilikina was the perfect low-risk signing for the Dallas Mavericks, who needed his defense more than anyone.…

Dallas ranked dead-last in steals, showing that they failed to shut opponents down and make them pay with turnovers. However, they had decent rim protection as they ranked top-10 in opposition points in the paint despite ranking 26th in blocks.

The stats prove that Jason Kidd has a huge task improving the team's defense before they are ready to make a deep playoff run.

#1 Dallas Mavericks' over-reliance on Luka Doncic

Dallas Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic

The Dallas Mavericks possess a once-in-a-generation talent in the form of Luka Doncic and are running the risk of burning him out due to their over-reliance on the superstar guard.

Doncic ranked second in the league in usage percentage with 35% last year, with a spike to 39% in the postseason. Usage rates are usually high for superstars, but Luka's percentage trends are on the heavier side and will weigh on the star as he grows older.

Kristaps Porzingis can lighten that load on Luka, carrying more of the offense than he did last season. However, Dallas' inability to get a secondary playmaker might come back to bite them at a later point.

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Edited by Raunak J
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