Chalmers had a very impressive rookie season , starting all 82 games and finishing the season averaging 10 points, five assists, and two steals per game. He went into the 2009-’10 with high expectations from his peers as he, along with Michael Beasley, was expected to help Wade lead the team to a possible 50 win season. Early in the campaign however, it became obvious that it was not the same Chalmers that the coaching staff expected and he was benched a month or so into the season.
While Mario did drop 30 points in a November 20th loss to the Toronto Raptors, Chalmers only contributed double-figures in points nine out of the 22 games he started and his season high in assists was just eight. His jump shot was off and his defense became a liability, as opposing point guard’s would have their way with the second year player. Carlos Arroyo was then inserted into the starting line up. Chalmers spent the rest of the season coming off the bench, where he proved himself to be suitable back up.
Late in the season and in the post season, Chalmers impressed by averaging 11 points in the five game series loss to the Boston Celtics. After a disappointing sophomore season though, Mario could receive a second chance as he now plays alongside three of the most dynamic players in the NBA today. Just like Rajon Rondo blossomed while playing alongside Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen, and Paul Pierce; Chalmers can emerge as a quality point guard alongside James, Wade, and Bosh. In fact he could end up turning some heads and surprising people this season.
Rajon was able to thrive off of the big three in Boston by being taking advantage of open shots/lanes and finding his supremely talented teammates for scores as well. Over the last three years, Rondo has become a superstar and is now being regarded as one of the top point guard’s in the league. He is coming off of his best season after averaging 13 points and 10 assists per game. Even though the three players that paved the way for him to thrive are deteriorating with age and health issues, he has already learned so much from his time with them that he can now fend for himself and find open scores for teammates that aren’t future hall of famers.
Chalmers could be in nearly the same situation as Rondo. Rajon only averaged six points, four rebounds, and four assists in his first season with the team in the year prior to the monumental deals and then saw his stats inflate over time as he developed a better chemistry with his teammates and became a better floor leader through his experience.
Mario has showed flashes of brilliance with his 30 point outing last season and a nine steal game early in his career and he could become the next point guard to watch out for as he plays alongside the modern day big three. If he remains the teams starter, there is no doubt that he will see his stats rise in the points and assists category as he is given open opportunities to score and easy opportunities to gain an assist with the absurd amount of talent that suddenly surrounds him.
Chalmers has good range from beyond the arc hitting 37% in his rookie season before seeing it plummet to 32% in this latest season. While he can be a liability when it comes to on the ball defense, Chalmers is one of the best in the league when it comes down to closing lanes by being a superb off the ball defender. Mario nearly led the league in steals during his first season.
Mario still has the potential to be “Super” and become a quality point guard in this league. He will get the chance to prove himself this year now that he has a talented team surrounding himself and Wade. He will be given the chance to become a future All-Star if he utilizes the team around him to their potential and will be given the starting point guard spot for good if he can prove to Coach Spo and Pat Riley that he is what they are looking for when it comes to a point guard.