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Mavs Practice Report - 'The Machine': How Much Does Coach Jason Kidd Trust Jalen Brunson?

Dallas Mavericks coach Jason Kidd makes it clear he holds great confidence in the abilities of Jalen Brunson.

DALLAS — While much of the attention is placed on Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzinigs, the Dallas Mavericks will need a strong 2021-22 campaign from a variety of key players — including backup point guard Jalen Brunson. 

Coming off a strong season with averages of 12.6 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 3.5 assists, the Mavericks hold high expectations for what Brunson can achieve during the upcoming regular season. 

On a recent appearance on the "Take Dat Wit You" podcast hosted by Mark Followill and Brian Dameris, Mavericks coach Jason Kidd touched on the outlook of Jalen Brunson during the 2021-22 season. 

Kidd made it abundantly clear that high expectations will be in place for Brunson as he enters his fourth season with the Mavericks organization. 

"I call him ‘The Machine’ because he understands how to run a team. I trust him just as much as I trust Luka," Kidd said.

The Mavericks remain intent on bringing Brunson off the bench to run the second unit — a role which helped him to build a respectable case for the NBA's Sixth Man of the Year honor last season. 

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The long-term trajectory for Brunson with the Mavericks has become a real topic of discussion as of late as he enters the 2021-22 season without a contract extension. 

A recent projection for Brunson's next contract from John Hollinger of The Athletic was a three-year, $57 million contract. The Mavericks are limited to offering him just a 120 percent raise from his current average salary  — setting the ceiling at $14 million for the 2022-23 season. 

Dallas will be limited to offering Brunson just $45.3 million over three seasons on his next contract — making it difficult to retain his services if an offer exceeds such a mark. 

The reasoning as to why Brunson has yet to receive a contract extension remains unclear. Brunson can earn more on the open market than what the Mavericks are limited to offer, if, of course, he manages to produce at a sufficient level to command such a figure. 

NOTES: Selected to the NBA's 75th Anniversary Team... Dirk Nowitzki! ... Kidd says the team hasn't talked about "load management'' as it relates to Kristaps Porzingis - maybe the best Mavs news of the fall ... The third season on Josh Green’s rookie-scale contract was picked up by the team on Tuesday.

QUOTEBOARD: “It’s better, but it’s only preseason. Now the real deal starts, so we’ll see then how it looks. It’s hard, but it’s something I have to do. It’s a part of the game I need to control better. And I think it’s getting better.'' - Luka on his refs relationship.