DALLAS – Josh Green knows the playoffs weren’t pretty.

In fact, on Friday after practice, he admitted that the film still makes him sick to his stomach because of how bad he played during the Dallas Mavericks’ run to the Western Conference Finals. He characterized it as “playing hot potato” with the basketball.  But he spent all summer watching the film anyway, in preparation for what may amount to his make-or-break year with Dallas.

After losing Jalen Brunson and failing to add an additional ball handler to compliment Luka Doncic and Spencer Dinwiddie, Green will be thrust into an increased playmaking role, as head coach Jason Kidd determines whether the third-year Maverick will sink or swim.

“Josh’s work this summer is paying off,” Kidd said. “He spent some time on his game, and you can see the payoff. But it’s just the tip of the iceberg for him. He’s just starting. He’s playing at a high level, and that’s good because we’ll need him.”

Specifically, Green worked on his jump shot, he said.

He understands his form has been inconsistent at best and ugly at worst. So, Green spent most of the summer adjusting his base to his jump shot, in hopes of not being the player teams stick their non-defenders on, while they focus on Doncic.

What he fixed in his jump shot was his “Stanky leg.” Often, one of his legs would fade out, and his form would fall apart, causing his near-trademark inconsistency when it came to knocking down open shots.

He now has a form that is structurally consistent every time he shoots the ball, even when he’s tired, he said.

Outside of jump shooting, Green focused on ballhandling. He knows that without Brunson, someone will need to handle the shot creation role. And Green remains confident in his abilities to do so after a summer full of playing basketball every day.

“Ball handling was my biggest thing,” he said. “Creating my own shot hasn’t been something I haven’t been confident in doing in games, so that’s been my biggest emphasis this year.”

Green also did some work with 16-year NBA veteran Kyle Lowry. The two played a healthy amount of one-on-one, where Green took notes of Lowry’s footwork, use of his body, and ability to play at his own pace.

In year three, Green’s focus is on exactly what Lowry was teaching him – slowing the game down.

“If you just slow down, the whole game slows down so much,” he said. “Going into year three, everything is slowing down. I am a lot more confident. My teammates are a lot more confident in me. And that helps me.”

As things go for Green’s expected increased role within the offense, he’s feeling no pressure, he said.

What it comes down to is whether he can produce at a high level for long stretches in games. Though high-level production hasn’t been seen, yet. Green feels as though his play will speak for itself.

“This is just progressing as a player,” Green said. “The more I improve on my individual game, it’s going to help the team. I just want to build block-by-block. My goal is to go out there and prove that I belong on the court.”

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Feature image via  Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports.