Spencer Dinwiddie played an important on a young Brooklyn Nets team from 2016-2021. He spent the next few years with the Washington Wizards and the Dallas Mavericks, but he found himself back in Brooklyn as a part of the trade that sent Kyrie Irving to the Mavericks last season.
Now more than ever, this Brooklyn group needs him to step up, particularly on the offensive end. Cam Thomas stepped into a role as the team’s number-one scorer to start the season. Thomas averaged 26.9 points on 47.9 percent shooting over the first eight games but suffered a left ankle sprain last week. The injury will keep the 22-year-old guard on the sidelines for at least another week.
With Thomas out of the lineup for the next few games, this is the perfect opportunity for Dinwiddie to find a rhythm as a scorer.
The Brooklyn Nets need more scoring from the veteran guard
In the four games prior to the Nets’ win over the Magic on Tuesday night, where Dinwiddie dropped 29 points, the 6’5 guard averaged just 8.5 points on 31% shooting. 20.6 Over those last four games, the Colorado product is shooting just 20.6% from downtown. Dinwiddie has only reached double-figure points in six of his first ten games, including each of his last three.
While these numbers may be sufficient for some, the Nets need him not only to score but score more efficiently. In Sunday’s win over the Wizards, Dinwiddie scored 12 points on three of 10 shooting and missed all five of his shots from three. The only bright spot from that game was his ability to get to the free-throw line and make free throws. The veteran went six of seven from the charity stripe.
But again, these numbers are well below what Dinwiddie has put up in the past. He averaged a career-high 20.6 points in 64 games during the 2019-20 campaign. Even last season, he averaged 17.3 points in 79 games with the Mavericks and the Nets. Dinwiddie is still at a point in his career where he can achieve those numbers. With Thomas out in the short term, the 30-year-old should be in line for more shot attempts. The question is, what will he do with those additional opportunities on the offensive end?
Why do the Nets need more scoring from Dinwiddie?
For the Nets to not only reach the NBA Playoffs but potentially win a series against one of the “giants” in the Eastern Conference, players like Dinwiddie and Cameron Johnson must be firing on all cylinders. To their credit, Brooklyn has received a massive lift from Lonnie Walker IV, who is averaging 15.4 points in just 21.3 minutes per game off the bench. He has given this second unit a much-needed spark, one that could help them reach new heights.
Nets head coach Jacque Vaughn is still trying to integrate Ben Simmons, who struggled with injuries throughout last season, so it is difficult to gauge where this team will be come February or March.
Dinwiddie is one of the more experienced players in Brooklyn, and if he can regain some of the efficiency he showed last year, the Nets’ attack could be far more dangerous down the line.