After an impressive month of March, Rick Carlisle and the Dallas Mavericks are prepared to give Seth Curry the keys.
Something runs in the Curry family because neither Steph Curry nor Seth are natural point guards. Coming out of college, both had to work to get the point guard label because they played like twos who were too small to compete in the NBA. Seth, who’s about 6-2, spent 63 percent of his minutes with the Sacramento Kings at shooting guard last season, and Dallas is trying to ween him into the point.
“We’ve got to look at Curry at point with a really conventional team out there,” said Carlisle to ESPN’s Tim MacMahon. “We’re going to give this a look. I don’t know how many games it’s going to be. It may be the rest of the year, it may not.” Curry’s averaged 16.7 points on 51.7 percent shooting from the field with a 21.6 usage rate since the All-Star break. His minutes have also cracked 32, but it’s odd that he’s only handed out 41 assists in 15 games.
It’s going to take time for Curry to get acclimated to playing the point for a majority of his minutes, and Carlisle and the team are looking to ease him into that role.
“There’s a certain aptitude and understanding of the game that goes with being a point guard,” said Carlisle after Curry hung 23 points and four assists in a win over the Los Angeles Clippers. “He’s demonstrated those abilities on a lot of occasions, but until we put the ball in his hands and really take a look at it, we’re not going to know for sure. Now is the time to do it.”
Playing point guard is one of the toughest positions in sports and is certainly the most complex in basketball. Not only do you need to worry about yourself, but you also need to know where all of your teammates need to be because you’re the coach on the floor. In addition to that, the basketball IQ needs to be off the charts, and the best point guards see the game in slow-motion while looking ahead.
A lot of the point guard’s responsibilities are things that can be learned, but the only way to go about that is with repetition. If the Dallas Mavericks want Curry as their long-term point guard, they need to put the ball in hands ad nauseam and have him go to work. It may not be pretty or effective, but they have nothing to lose.
It appears, however, they’re on the right track. Basketball-Reference estimates that 58 percent of his minutes have come at the one. For those to increase, Curry’s going to do battle with Yogi Ferrell, Dallas’ other potential point guard. When he initially got to the Mavericks, Ferrell got hot quickly because the situation was much different than Brooklyn. He was getting more shots because of a bigger role, but also because the point guard is expected to create a majority of Dallas’ plays.
Both have shown they’re able to coexist but Curry’s been the more reliable producer as of late, and the Mavericks can’t risk having a facilitator who doesn’t manufacture offense.
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