Jason Terry has averaged 12 points per game on 35% shooting in this series. His PER is down a full 10 points (from 19.3 to 9.3), his true shooting percentage is down 12 points, and his effective field goal percentage down is down 12 points. Under any normal circumstances I’d send in a police report for JET’s sudden disappearance. Big games are Terry’s thing, and his heroics have been a complete non-factor in this series.
Bruce Bowen did a number on JET, but in doing so left Josh Howard and J.J. Barea free to spread their wings. But then, something strange happened: when Bowen’s talents were needed elsewhere, Terry’s jumper didn’t come back. It could have run off to elope with Matt Bonner’s, or maybe it’s still hiding under the bed from big, bad Bruce. Regardless, the one Mav that oozes confidence no matter the occasion seems to have lost it in his stroke. The numbers say that Jason Terry is long overdue for a big game, but I just don’t see it happening against the Spurs. I don’t know if anyone can fully understand why his shot has abandoned him, but Terry isn’t hitting on wide open looks from midrange and long range, virtually automatic shots for him this season.
Jason Terry has garnered an awful lot of defensive attention over the course of this season, but he’s never encountered anything quite like this. For once, Terry is being doubled off of the two man game (name drop!). For once, Terry had drawn the Spurs’ top perimeter defender. I wouldn’t say Terry’s in a shooting slump, because these events are largely explainable: San Antonio is playing some great defense on Terry. So good, in fact, that they don’t even have to guard him to guard him.
If the Mavs are able to make it to the next round, we won’t have to worry about Terry’s shooting. The percentages will pick up, he’ll show up in a big way, and he’ll make sure that the folks in Denver (or, as a formality, New Orleans) remember his name. But for the rest of this series, I wouldn’t count on the JET taking off.
Luckily for Terry, he doesn’t need to score 20. The Spurs are going to try to claw their way out of this 3-1 hole. Dirk, Josh, Kidd, the bench, and maybe even the Spurs’ own shooters will do their best to bury them. All the JET needs to do is bide his time, chip in when he can, and be there to put one final shovel of dirt on the Spurs’ grave.