The Mavericks shone on the 3-point shot in their Game 4 victory over the Suns. And this time the light did not come from Luka Doncic, 1/10 behind the arc. Alongside Davis Bertans (4/6) and the Bullock-Dinwiddie pair (at 2/5 and 2/4 respectively), it is Dorian Finney-Smith who distinguished himself with a remarkable 8/12, scoring all of his 24 points on outside shooting.
“When he plays like that, when he’s aggressive and he doesn’t gamble on his shot but just takes catch-and-shoots, he’s as good as anybody else.”rejoiced his coach, Jason Kidd. “We needed this boost and it helped us a lot”.
Eight 3-pointers, 24 points, zero dribbles
It’s also a nice revenge for this undrafted player who took the time, first through his defense and then in this role as a 4 shooter position, to find his marks over his six years spent in Dallas to get there. two regular seasons in a row beyond the 39% success rate by far. An address rewarded with a nice contract extension during the season: 52 million dollars over four years.
“In the beginning, Rick Carlisle only told me to take 3-point shots if the ball came to me at the end of possession. Now I am told to take the shot as soon as I have a good position. It is a reward for the work that I have done and that the whole team has noticed”he dropped after failing to a 3-pointer of the franchise playoff record held by Jason Terry. “When I made five 3-pointers, Luka said to me, ‘You’re going to have more’. When LD told me that, I had no doubt that I was going to have other situations.
This is indeed what happened, “DoDo” continued to fire from afar, without taking the least dribble before shooting, and he notably put two important baskets six minutes from the end to preserve the ‘difference.
Adjustments to be expected on Game 5
His blow of heat should be accompanied by adjustments in the next game, since Monty Williams obviously tasted little at the festival of “role players” Texans, even if he admits to having his share of responsibilities.
“We have to respect Finney-Smith more than we did. He has an impact on the offensive rebound game and now he shoots well. And we have to respect that”admitted the coach of the Suns. “It’s something that I have to be able to correct as a coach. We have to get the players out of the 3-point line, and realize that Luka was 1/10, and instead of locking the racquet to him, maybe forcing him to shoot. We were looking for help to keep him from going into the paint, but there were sequences where he got confused by his dribbling and then saw him find the perfect pass for a 3-point shot.
Dorian Finney-Smith and the Mavs now know they are expected in Arizona. Game 5 promises a great battle!
“We know that they will make adjustments. We have to take what we did well in this game and step it up a notch, because it’s going to be even tougher there, where they play amazingly. The easy baskets, we have to take that away from them. No lay-ups or 3-pointers in transition, and force them to play against our half-court defense.”warned Dorian Finney-Smith.