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Is Darren Collison the Maverick’s answer at point guard?
Now we all know the point guard rotation for the struggling Mavericks was quite perplex in 2012-2013; and the young, snappy point guard in Darren Collison struggled to find an identity in the second half of the season in regards to the signing of Mike James who later on took Collison’s job as a starter.
Here’s a breakdown of the Maverick’s point guard rotation in the regular season as a whole for 2012-2013.
Darren Collison paved the way for the Maverick’s starting point guard duties for most of the season when Dirk Nowitzki was injured.
- GP=Games played
- Min=Minutes per game
- Screenshot captured off of HoopData.com
It was rumored that coach Carlisle and the staff didn’t think Collison was a great fit under the system when Dirk came back.
Collison was averaging 13 points per game on nearly 50% shooting half way into the season until Carlisle signed Mike James. Those seem like great numbers. What’s the deal here?
- At times when I analyzed Collison’s biggest struggles, it was mainly his lack of controlling tempo and running the team at times. Raw stats don’t always tell the full story for guards.
- I just knew the coaching staff wrote Collison off most times with struggling to find his wing players when his opponents were set in a 3-2 zone.
- I also witnessed Carlisle changed the team’s standard pick-and-roll coverages on the fly, I remember Carlisle tried to send all side pick-and-rolls to the baseline instead of having their big men hedge hard and/or chase those ball handlers out toward mid-court; which I think was a negative for Collison who thrived in diming his front-court for easy shots in the post in Indiana.
- The Mavericks thrived on the mid-range shot the whole season and stats show an average of 3.7 assists led to two-point field goals mainly in the mid-range.
- Collison and James aren’t skilled penetrators, and Collison’s tendency to pull up from 20 feet even with open space in front of him was maddening. But he showed a bit of off-the-bounce aggression late into the season, and it didn’t take much penetration to suck in a defense and open up those corner 3s.
If Collison returns:
- Collison brings a load of athleticism to the squad; and also concluding Collison is playing in the most enduring era of point guards in the game’s history, I wouldn’t mind a speedster that can catch up with the league’s modern guards.
- Salary. Collison is a restricted free agent this off-season, and the Mavericks could use him off the bench for just a low-paying salary and with a dose of athleticism and shooting.
- Penetration. The Mavericks as a whole the past five years have been a rather reluctant team when it comes to penetration in the key. Collison isn’t afraid to drive to the basket or sacrifice his slender frame. Aggressiveness is just what this team needs to improve on.
- Gambling in passing lanes. Collison could be labeled as a rather young and learning defender, but goes for too many steals which results into fouls.
- Even though Collison drives the lane occasionally, he pulls up for 20 foot jumpers more frequently which isn’t a coincidence with the system Carlisle runs. Saying that, Collison isn’t the most effective shooter on the team and his jumpers usually don’t fall.
- Coach Carlisle isn’t a fan. We all know Carlisle and Collison don’t mesh with their tactics, which led to numerous times of coach getting furious about his decisions on the court constantly.
A final look at Darren Collison’s basic statistics for 2012-2013.
That being said, I highly doubt Collison will return to Dallas this upcoming season, if the Mavericks don’t get a high quantity big man.
But with the front office lingering and shaking up the roster every off-season, I wouldn’t be surprised if Collison returned. I also have some doubts on Coach Carlisle. Carlisle needs to accept the younger generation as a whole someday and needs to learn you can’t thrive on a of veterans to contend with an extensive amount of veterans to lead you to a contender. According to Mark Cuban and the front-office, this team was supposed to be building for a championship, but the Mavericks are far from the promise land. Adding seven new veterans to the roster every off-season after gambling and failing to land a superstar isn’t the best idea. The Mavericks need to move on to the rebuilding stage and grab young adolescent wing players that fit Rick Calrisle’s mold. Re-signing Collison could be a risk, but if there isn’t any other options, I’d do it in a heartbeat.
You be the judge.
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