The Dallas Mavericks have quietly put together an intriguingly young and talented core group of players this season. Thanks to the last two drafts and selections of guard-forward Luka Doncic and point guard Dennis Smith Jr., they’re certainly trending in the right direction. Dallas hosts the Washington Wizards Tuesday in a game featuring two incredibly talented young guards (if you consider Doncic more of a guard).
Surprisingly, both the Mavericks and Wizards enter this game with 2-7 records and are looking to get things trending in the right direction. For the Mavericks, they’ve dropped six-straight games after a 2-1 start to he season. On the other side, the Wizards snapped their recent five-game skid Sunday, topping the New York Knicks 108-95 behind John Wall and Bradley Beal’s 48 combined points.
The Mavericks are expected to be healthy in this game and forward Harrison Barnes is seemingly back at full strength after playing his fifth game of the season. Let’s take a look at the team’s projected starting lineup and roster for the matchup with the Wizards.
Mavericks’ Projected Starting Lineup & Roster vs. Wizards
*Notates projected starter
C: DeAndre Jordan*, Salah Mejri
PF: Harrison Barnes*, Dwight Powell, Maxi Kleber
SF: Luka Doncic*, Dorian Finney-Smith
SG: Wesley Matthews*, Ryan Broekhoff
PG: Dennis Smith Jr.*, J.J. Barea, Jalen Brunson
The Mavericks will be without veteran guard Devin Harris again due to a hamstring injury. In turn, we’ll likely see quite a bit of Barea handling the ball when Smith is off the floor. Doncic’s ability to play a variety of positions due to his 6-foot-7 frame certainly makes life easier when injuries occur.
On the season, Doncic is leading the team in points per game (19.4) as well as minutes (34.8). Free-agent acquisition DeAndre Jordan has been dominant on the glass, pulling down 14.3 rebounds per game. The Mavericks entire starting lineup averages 10-plus points while nine players have scored 7.3 points per game or more.