Elton Brand As A Bench Player Is A Key To Success For The Dallas Mavericks

By Derek Ayala

I am one of the first media folk to point out how horrible Elton Brand has been for the Dallas Mavericks since day one. I was wondering why he was not benched for his horrible performance during the month of November.

He has been benched three times this year and the last two time he has come off the bench he has played great. In last night’s win against the Detroit Pistons, he had a double-double. He scored 17 points and grabbed 12 rebounds to go along with four blocks.

This past Tuesday against the Philadelphia 76ers he scored 17 points, had eight rebounds and a block. As a starter he averaged 6.1 points and 5.3 rebounds.

At 33 years old and a guy that has been playing since 1999, it may be time for Brand to come off the bench permanently. I do not know what coach Rick Carlisle has planned, but with a crucial three game road trip coming up it may be a good idea to have Brand coming off the bench.

If he plays like he has in the past two times he has come off the bench then he could help the Mavs tremendously during the next three games. Carlisle may be on the verge of figuring out what rotation will work throughout this long season.

Right now, Jae Crowder has been taking over when Brand is starting on the bench. Crowder as a starter will not be for long. When Dirk Nowitzki returns to the team, then he will be at the starting power forward.

Brand is the perfect person to come off the bench for Nowitzki. That’s if Carlisle plans it that way.

I believe that he was a big part of the Mavs victory last night. I believe that he continues to play that way from the sidelines then the team will have an excellent bench depth once Nowitzki returns.

The Mavs do need a strong guy to come off the bench when the starters need rest. Brand will be the guy to do it. The last time they had somebody that can grab rebounds and score 15 plus points was Tyson Chandler and look what that got them in 2011. A NBA Championship.

I am not saying that Brand is the main guy that will lead the Mavs to another title this year. However, if he performs like he did last night on a consistent bases then there’s no doubt that he could help them on a long playoff run. That’s if they make the post-season.

Success will only happen if Carlisle brings him from the bench and not as a starter. I believe that if he goes back to the starting line-up then he will play like he did as a non-factor. If he comes from the bench then who knows? Maybe the Mavs can turn their season around before Nowitzki returns late December.

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