John Jenkins will have another opportunity to show the world that he can be just as deadly from behind the NBA's three-point line as he was behind the NCAA's. This time, it will be in Texas.
The Vanderbilt alum announced that he had signed with the Dallas Mavericks after spending his first three seasons as a professional with the Atlanta Hawks. Jenkins confirmed the signing on Twitter on Monday evening.
Guess word got out quick lol. Can't thank the @dallasmavs enough for this great opportunity, me and my family are truly blessed!!— John Jenkins (@JohnnyCashVU23) July 21, 2015
The change in atmosphere should be beneficial for the former Commodore. He was stuck behind a resurgent Kyle Korver in Atlanta and hardly had the chance to show off his tremendous shooting in the NBA. His limited impact - and recurring injuries that that helped limit him to only 37 games in the last two seasons - convinced the Hawks to decline the fourth-year option built in to his rookie contract. That made him an under-the-radar free agent this summer.
Jenkins brings high level shooting to a Maverick team that is short on options at the wing. They signed Wesley Matthews away from Portland to play shooting guard, but he's coming off an Achilles' tear that could sap his effectiveness in 2015 and beyond. Veterans JJ Barea and Devin Harris can both slide over to the 2 to relieve Matthews, but both are better suited as combo guards who can man the point. Jenkins is the only natural shooting guard on the roster who will be vying for that backup spot.
That could be a major boon for the former SEC Player of the Year. Jenkins had few opportunities to break out in Atlanta, but still made 37.5% of his three-pointers over his career - including a 40.4% mark last winter. He'll need to prove that his defensive game has improved in order to stay on the court, but a return to the shooting form that made him a Vanderbilt legend will make it difficult for Rick Carlisle to bury him on the bench. 2015-16 may be Jenkins's sink or swim season, especially since years two and three of his contract aren't guaranteed.