The Dallas Mavericks incurred a huge blow when they lost forward Tim Hardaway, Jr. to a foot injury Tuesday night when the Golden State Warriors blew out the Mavs by 38 points.

Tim Hardaway Jr Dallas Mavericks Mavs foot broken injury
Tim Hardaway, Jr. from the Dallas Mavs grabs his left foot after a freak injury caused a fracture in a game against the Golden State Warriors at Chase Center in San Francisco. (Image: Getty)

Hardaway broke the fifth metatarsal on his left foot and he’ll be out indefinitely. The injury occurred late in the second quarter when Hardaway drove to the hoop on a layup and fell to the hardwood in an unusual manner. He stood up and winced in pain, but still managed to shoot and connect on two free throws. The injury caused so much pain that Hardaway needed assistance getting off the floor.

“That’s just bad luck,” said teammate Luka Doncic. “He’s disappointed. Every time you get injured you are sad, so we tried to cheer him up.”

After the game, X-rays revealed a broken fifth metatarsal. Hardaway tallied 10 points before he exited the game.

The Mavs (27-21) hold down the #5 seed in the Western Conference, but they’ve now lost a key starter and their fourth-best scorer. The Mavs are +4000 odds to win the 2022 NBA championship. They’re +280 odds to win the Southwest Division behind the Memphis Grizzlies (-400), who are playing excellent basketball and moved into the #3 seed overall.

Tough break for Hardaway

Hardaway averages 14.2 points, 3.7 rebounds, and 2.2 assists this season with the Mavs. He started in 20 out of his 42 appearances this season. In 183 games with the Mavs, Hardaway averages 17.6 ppg while shooting 35.8% from 3-point range.

Head coach Jason Kidd will most likely insert Dorian Finney-Smith (10.2 ppg) into the starting lineup. Expect Reggie Bullock (6.2 ppg) to also pick up more playing time due to Hardaway’s injury.

The New York Knicks drafted Hardaway out of Michigan with a late first-round pick in the 2013 NBA Draft. He averaged low double digits off the bench for the Knicks before they traded him to the Atlanta Hawks after two seasons.

Hardaway returned to the Knicks in 2017 after he signed a four-year deal worth $71 million. He started 100 games in his second stint in New York, and averaged career-high 19.1 ppg in 2018-19. The Knicks packaged Hardaway in a trade with the Mavs for a disgruntled Kristaps Porzingis, who demanded a move. At the time, Knicks fans were livid that the Mavs got the better end of the deal.

Hardaway recently signed a new four-year contract with the Mavs that’s worth $75 million. With Hardaway out, the Mavs could be interested in acquiring help prior to the trade deadline. Myles Turner was mentioned in trade rumors, but now the Mavs could show some interest in Marcus Smart, Dennis Schroder, or Eric Gordon.

Son of Run-TMC

Hardaway is the son of former NBA star Tim Hardaway, Sr. The elder Hardaway is a five-time All-Star with a devastating crossover-dribble move, who averaged 17.7 ppg and played with the Golden State Warriors, Miami Heat, Dallas Mavericks, Denver Nuggets, and Indiana Pacers.

Hardaway Sr. also played with the Warriors in the early 1990s during the Run-TMC era with Mitch Richmond and Chris Mullin. The Warriors drafted Hardaway Sr. with the #14 pick in the 1989 NBA Draft out of UTEP.

The high-flying Warriors were fun to watch in the early 1990s and head coach Don Nelson gave the league a glimpse into its future during an era of hard-nosed, defensive-minded teams that did not rely on 3-pointer or an upbeat tempo. The Run-TMC era ended when the Warriors traded Richmond to the Sacramento Kings. They eventually traded Hardaway to the Miami Heat in the middle of the 1995-96 season.

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