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Mavs vs. Celtics: Jason Terry more efficient in smaller role

After eight seasons in Dallas, the former Sixth Man of the Year has responded well to a smaller role on a talented but inconsistent Boston team.

Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

When Jason Terry left Dallas this off-season, he went to one of the only teams in the NBA older than the Mavs.

And while he's now 35 years old and wearing a different uniform, he's still the same player Mavs fans came to love in his time in Dallas.

At 6'2 175, he's one of the best shooters in NBA history, who combines excellent ball-handling ability with a lightning-quick release as well as the ability to move without the ball. That combination of skills, along with an underrated ability to make plays for his teammates, has allowed him to be effective well into what should rightly be his dotage as an NBA player.

By the end of his time in Dallas, he was being stretched beyond his offensive capabilities as a second option, but in Boston, he's been able to play off of Rajon Rondo, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett.

As a result, while his minutes have stayed the same and his per-game totals have gone down (from 15 points and 3.5 assists to 11.5 points and 2 assists), his offensive efficiency numbers have gone up (from shooting 43/38/88 to 46/38/86).

Unfortunately, what he doesn't provide is any defense, which is becoming an increasingly big problem in Boston, especially when Garnett is off the floor.

Terry's minutes will likely be cut when former Texas guard Avery Bradley, a defensive dynamo at both back-court positions, returns from off-season shoulder surgery in the next few weeks.

Nevertheless, his offensive efficiency and pure outside shot could allow him to extend his career well into his late 30's.

On a nationally televised game on Wednesday night, he'll want to show his old team he can still play, and if they stick Derek Fisher on him for any amount of time, that shouldn't be too difficult.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.