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Nerlens Noel needs to earn his playing time


Rocky Widner/NBA/Getty Images

Nerlens Noel did not play in the Dallas Mavericks’ 111-104 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday because of a coach’s decision.

Dallas head coach Rick Carlisle said the matchup against the Cavs made it difficult for traditional centers to play and Salah Mejri earned playing time over Noel.

“Look, minutes have to be earned,” Carlisle said. “At this point, if it’s between him and Salah, Salah has earned the minutes. There’s no doghouse here. There just isn’t. It’s pretty simple: You compete, and if you earn minutes, you get minutes. And you’ve got to compete to keep them, because it’s a competitive situation.”

Carlisle was especially concerned about Noel and the matchup against the Cav’s perimeter-shooting center Kevin Love.

However, Noel was not frustrated with the lack of playing time.

“I’m good, I’m good,” Noel said. “I‘m a very self-confident player. I know I can go in there and change games. When my number is called, I’ll do just that and help some winning efforts. That’s all my play style is about, is just winning. When I’m called on, I’ll bring my winning effort.”

Noel signed a one-year, $4.1 million qualifying offer with the Mavs this offseason after turning down a four-year $70 million contract.

[Nerlens Noel behind Salah Mejri in quest for playing time, Rick Carlisle says]

Article written by Kindsey Bernhard

Lover of dogs, sports and beer. @kindseybernhard

6 responses to “Nerlens Noel needs to earn his playing time”

  1. Peas and Carrots

    Turning down that contract looks like a mistake now after averaging only 10 minutes per game so far. Hopefully he turns things around this season so he can earn back that payday.

    1. timbo

      You don’t think, before he ever played a game, that it was a mistake? Who cares about playing time. He turned down $17.5 mil a year for four years to get $4 mil for one year. He’d need to sign a $22 mil deal over the next three to break even! Come on man!!!!

  2. Smyrna_Cat

    There is an ebb and flow in the NBA. If he keeps working and stays healthy, I think he will be fine.

  3. Bill Selfs Hair Piece

    “Earned Not Given”

  4. jahanc2uky

    The mavs are devaluing him on purpose. You give him 30 minutes and he will give you a double double with a couple blocks and a steal every night.

  5. Smyrna_Cat

    This