According to Brad Townsend of the Dallas Morning News, Dallas Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle is saying that Dennis Smith Jr. is doubtful for Saturday’s game against the Houston Rockets. Smith is day-to-day with a wrist injury. The Mavs’ ninth overall selection in the 2017 NBA Draft, Smith already missed Wednesday night’s game against the New Orleans Pelicans, a 26-point blowout loss.
The dynamic, second-year point guard’s box score stats are down slightly but his efficiency is up. The good news for Smith and Dallas is that they’re actually winning this season. After a disappointing 2017-18 season, the Mavs didn’t want to have another losing season.
So far, so good. Dallas is a respectable 12-11 and currently sit in the eighth spot in the Western Conference playoff picture. Ironically enough, the Mavs’ prize for their disappointing 2017-18 season — Luka Doncic — is probably the biggest reason for the team’s turnaround. The 19-year-old Slovenian is leading the team in scoring while coming in at second in assists and rebounds per game.
The young swingman can do a little bit of everything and he’s the franchise cornerstone that Dallas wants to build around. That being said, they hope Smith Jr. can develop into the Robin to Doncic’s Batman. Smith Jr. has all the physical tools to be successful alongside Doncic.
For now, Smith Jr. will look to get healthy and rejoin his teammates. In the meantime, Doncic and the rest of the Mavs’ cadre will try to hold off the flailing Rockets and build on their solid start to the season.