Brooklyn Nets: Why the team should trade Spencer Dinwiddie

Brooklyn Nets should trade Spencer Dinwiddie with the next eight months because the return of Caris LeVert and Kyrie Irving will put a greater spotlight on his weaknesses, shooting

Brooklyn Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie said this in regards to how his role will change with the recent return of Kyrie Irving:

“Yeah, we’re going to stay aggressive. I’m going to do what they ask me to do when Kyrie gets back, whatever that means, still starting or coming off the bench. It’s all part of it.”

However, one can argue that the Nets should trade Spencer Dinwiddie with the next eight months because the return of Caris LeVert and Kyrie Irving will put a greater spotlight on his weaknesses, shooting.

Dinwiddie’s statistical success over the past couple of seasons has been determined by how much he has the ball in his hands. For example, over the first 14 games of last season, he shared the backcourt with D’Angelo Russell and Caris LeVert, which restricted his touches as Dinwiddie averaged 56.5 per game. The 56.5 touches allowed him to amass 10.5 drives per game.

The 10.5 drives created 6.4 points and 0.5 assets per game for the team. This accounted for 46 percent of his total points and 12.2 percent of his assists as he averaged 13.9 points with 4.1 assists.

Midway through the 14th game, LeVert suffered a dislocated right foot which put him on the shelf for the next two months. Consequently, head coach Kenny Atkinson had to give Dinwiddie more time in the role of ball-handler. Dinwiddie averaged 62.7 touches over the next 35 games.

This is an increase of 6.2 touches per game from the first 14 games. The 62.7 touches led to a significant increase in his drives as he went from 10.5 to 15.8 per game.

The 15.8 drives created 9.3 points and 1.3 assets per game for the team. This is an increase of four points and 0.8 assists per game from the first 14 games. Drives accounted for 50 percent of his total points and 24.1 percent of his assists as he averaged 18.5 points with 5.4 assists.

Unfortunately, those statistics took a hit upon LeVert return from injury as he averaged 52.2 touches per game after the All-Star. Dinwiddie touched the ball 8.7 fewer times a game than the last 35 games. The reduction in his touches led to a significant drop in his drives per game as he went from 15.8 to 13.7.

Dinwiddie created 8.8 points and 0.8 assists for the team on these drives. This was a decrease of 0.5 points and assists per game. The combination of these factors led to a significant decrease in his total scoring output and a decrease in his distribution as he averaged 15.7 points with 3.4 assists.

Dinwiddie’s season is unfolding similarly this year as he shared the backcourt with Kyrie Irving and Caris LeVert over the first 10 games. The three-guard rotation limited the number of touches for Spencer Dinwiddie as he averaged 46.3 per game. The 46.3 touches allowed him to average 13.6 drives per game. The 13.6 drives created 9.3 points and 1.7 assists for the team.

Drives accounted for 54.4 percent of his total points and 36.2 percent of his assists as he averaged 17.1 points with 4.7 assists.

During the 10th game, Brooklyn started to experience injuries as LeVert sustained ligament damage in his right thumb. The next game, Kyrie Irving sustained a right shoulder impingement. The injuries kept both players out for almost two months forcing Kenny Atkinson to put the basketball in his hands of Dinwiddie.

Dinwiddie averaged 81.1 touches over the next 22 games. This is an increase of 34.8 touches per game from the first 10 games. The 81.1 touches led to a significant increase in his drives as he went from 13.6 to 21.6 per game.

The 21.6 drives created 13.8 points and 1.8 assets per game for the team. This is an increase of 4.5 points and 0.4 assists per game from the first 14 games. Drives accounted for 53.7 percent of his total points and 25.3 percent of his assists as he averaged 25.7 points with 7.1 assists.

Unfortunately, those statistics once again took a hit upon LeVert’s return from injury as he averaged 75.6 touches per game during the next five games. Dinwiddie touched the ball 5.5 fewer times a game than the last 22 games. The reduction in his touches led to a significant drop in his drives per game as he went from 21.6 to 15.4.

Dinwiddie created 10.2 points and 1.4 assists for the team on these drives. This was a decrease of 3.6 points and  0.4 assists per game. The combination of these factors led to a significant decrease in his total scoring output as he averaged 17.2 points with 7.6 assists.

The decline in touches has forced Dinwiddie to spend more time off the ball, which is putting a spotlight on his biggest weakness, shooting. Dinwiddie has shot 31.8 percent from behind the arc during this time. Therefore, defenders leave him open whenever he is off the ball as 73.8 percent of his 3’s have been uncounted. He hasn’t been able to take full advantage of these open looks making 80.5 percent of them

This issue will only get worse as time passes because his touches are going to decline further with the return of Kevin Durant next season. Kevin has averaged 65 touches per game over the last six seasons.

Next: NBA Trade Rumors: The Lakers are open to trading almost anyone

The combination of these factors indicates that the Brooklyn Nets should trade Spencer Dinwiddie within the next eight months as his effectiveness will decrease from this point forward. For example, Brooklyn could trade Spencer to the Atlanta Hawks for Evan Turner and a first-round pick as Atlanta is trying to surround Trae Young with more NBA quality talent. Brooklyn could use the pick to acquire a player who can thrive off the ball.

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