When the Dallas Mavericks inked Monta Ellis this summer in a three-year deal worth $25 million, they never could really imagine that he could turn out to be that helpful to the team. Of course, Ellis was known to be an explosive player with solid scoring skills. However, he had many flaws in his game, like his shot selection, the fact he is a player who demands the ball and that he wasn’t actually a playmaker.
However, now, almost two months into the 2013-2014 season, Monta Ellis is proving that he just couldn’t work in sync with Brandon Jennings last season in Milwaukee. Now, as a member of the Dallas Mavericks, playing alongside Dirk Nowitzki, he is certainly looking like he has found a perfect role.
His shooting percentage went up, in comparison to the last few seasons of his career, his scoring went up and he looks like he cut off his bad shot selections. Ellis is a major member of this Dallas Mavericks team, which currently holds an 18-13 record and the eighth seed in the Western Conference.
Dirk Nowitzki admits that having Ellis in the team is very beneficial. He actually said that he has never played with such an explosive player in his career. The truth is that the two of them have already built chemistry and they combine greatly on the offensive end.
In addition, the Mavs’ roster features a bunch of proven veterans which provide much help to the star duo. Shawn Marion, Jose Calderon and Vince Carter are certainly not in their prime, but they are in a position to give that extra spark to Ellis and Nowitzki when needed.
Ellis declined to stay with the Milwaukee Bucks, turning down a two-year extension worth $25 million. Instead, he chose to seek for a better team, an environment that suits him better and apparently he did. Ellis was clearly unhappy with the Bucks. The poor environment within the team made him develop bad habits himself. His performance dropped on almost any category. His shot selection was bad. He couldn’t play up to his capabilities.
But now, everything seems to be working in perfect sync for him. Ellis is averaging 20.3 points per contest, which ranks him 19th in the league. In addition, he is one of the seven players in the league averaging over 20 points and 5 assists per game.
Marc Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks was also impressed with Ellis’s output this season. As he said, Ellis was simply not himself when he was playing for bad teams. After all, that was the reason he chose to depart from Milwaukee.
The truth is that Ellis never really had a chance to play alongside a player like Dirk Nowitzki. He never was given the shot to shine. He never actually had the chance to be a part of a quality team. Now, all the pieces of the puzzle seem to be in place and that’s why he has the chance to deliver such performances.