The Dallas Mavericks have met with University of Connecticut star Jordan Hawkins prior to the NBA Combine. Hawkins relayed the news in a quick interview with New York Times and Forbes contributor Adam Zagoria. Hawkins mentions he met with the Thunder, Clippers, Lakers, and Nets as well.
.@UConnMBB star Jordan Hawkins says he models his game after Klay Thompson and Max Strus, among others— Adam Zagoria (@AdamZagoria) May 17, 2023
Met today at the Combine with OKC, Clippers, Mavericks, Lakers and Nets pic.twitter.com/IDzPLtCF6w
Hawkins averaged 16.2 points per game last season, in addition to 2.8 rebounds and 1.3 assists per game. He shot 38 percent from behind the arc on 7.6 attempts per game. Even more encouraging, he shot almost 89 percent from the free throw line. A high free throw percentage at the college level is often a better indicator of 3-point shooting ability than other stats, so the fact he hit at almost 90 percent means his shot is probably legit.
Hawkins was named to the Big East All-Freshman team in 2021-22, then took a huge leap. He went from averaging 5.8 points per game as a freshman to 16.2 points per game as a sophomore. Hawkins was named to the All-Big East 1st team last season, as well as NCAA All-Tournament team.
In the clip above, Hawkins talks about modeling his game after Ray Allen, Klay Thompson, and Max Strus. If the Mavericks feel like he can actually be a version of those players, they should be locked onto Hawkins, as it’s exactly the type of player they need next to Luka Doncic on the perimeter.
Tim Hardaway Jr. has been an effective shooting guard playing beside Doncic, but he’s often inconsistent. If Hawkins can replicate that shooting without being streaky like Hardaway, that could be a huge addition for the Mavericks.
Thompson especially is a good example of what Dallas needs on the perimeter, but he’s likely too expensive and is past his prime (if he makes it to free agency at all). It’s not realistic to project that Hawkins could be the next Thompson, because Klay is a guaranteed hall of famer. But if he can be a version of Thompson, then that’s valuable to the Mavericks.
It’s encouraging to know the Mavericks are at least looking into Hawkins. Hopefully they like what they see and invest in a young player on the perimeter.