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SportLegend of Luka grows: Doncic takes over with late heroics to lead Mavericks past T'wolves

16:30  12 january  2019
16:30  12 january  2019 Source:   usatoday.com

Davis scores 48, Pelicans edge Doncic, Mavs 114-112

Davis scores 48, Pelicans edge Doncic, Mavs 114-112 Anthony Davis hit a go-ahead, fall-away jumper with 43.9 seconds left and scored a season-high 48 points to outduel rookie Luka Doncic and lift the New Orleans Pelicans over the Dallas Mavericks 114-112 on Friday night. Davis was fouled on the shot and made the free throw for a two-point lead. Dallas got two more possessions, but Doncic had a layup blocked by Jrue Holiday, Dennis Smith Jr. missed a 3-pointer and the Mavericks couldn't get off a shot on a final possession with four seconds left. Davis also grabbed 17 rebounds and New Orleans snapped a five-game skid.

mediabest January 12, 2019 Doncic grows Legend Luka of t . We might need to start thinking even bigger. The rookie from Slovenia added to his growing mystique Friday night, taking over late to lead the Dallas Mavericks to a 119-115 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves.

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Legend of Luka grows: Doncic takes over with late heroics to lead Mavericks past T'wolves© Provided by USA Today Sports Media Group LLC

As one of the most accomplished prospects to enter the NBA in years, expectations were high for Luka Doncic. We might need to start thinking even bigger.

The rookie from Slovenia added to his growing mystique Friday night, taking over late to lead the Dallas Mavericks to a 119-115 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves. Doncic finished with 29 points and scored seven of the Mavericks' final nine, including a go-ahead 3-pointer over Karl-Anthony Towns with 22.9 seconds left.

Doncic added 12 assists and eight rebounds, just missing his first career triple-double. At 19 years, 317 days, he is the youngest player with at least 25 points and 10 assists in a game since LeBron James (19 years, 95 days) did it in 2004.

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Doncic, Smith key Mavs' late surge to beat Thunder 105-103 The Dallas Mavericks beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 105-103 on Sunday night. Paul George scored the last 13 points for Oklahoma City and finished with 36, but he missed a pull-up jumper over Smith with 2 seconds left in the first of two straight meetings on back-to-back nights for these regional rivals. BOX SCORE: MAVERICKS 105, THUNDER 103 The Thunder still had a chance with 1.7 seconds left, but Russell Westbrook missed a corner 3-pointer at the buzzer to wrap up a rough night for the 2017 MVP. He was 4 of 22 from the field for nine points with nine rebounds and eight assists.

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Doncic is the second rookie in Mavericks history with at least 25 points, 10 assists and five rebounds in a game, joining Jason Kidd (April 11, 1995).

"That's what he does so far for us," said longtime Mavericks star Dirk Nowitzki. "He's been a great closer for us."

While his stat lines have been historic, perhaps even more impressive has been Doncic's late-game heroics. He is second in the league in field goal percentage during clutch time. Doncic is shooting 57.1 percent when the game is within five points in the final five minutes, trailing only Indiana Pacers star Victor Oladipo's 63.2 percent.

Doncic hasn’t changed Mavs’ timeline – he is their timeline

Doncic hasn’t changed Mavs’ timeline – he is their timeline Luka Doncic is the real deal. 

Legend of Luka grows : Doncic takes over with late heroics to lead Mavericks past T ' wolves . But over the years, juniper bushes, which are a common sight across the plateau, have become a source of local pride; they are used for a drink that is as distinctive as the plateau’s landscape.

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His propensity for big late shots was on full display against the T'wolves. Dallas led by 10 midway through the fourth quarter, but Minnesota rallied to take a 111-110 lead with 1:41 left. Doncic answered with a short floater in the lane to put the Mavericks back up.

Jeff Teague then scored for the T'wolves, but Doncic answered again with a drive and dunk. Taj Gibson tipped in a Teague miss to put Minnesota ahead 115-114 and force a Dallas timeout with 35.7 seconds left.

After a stolen inbound pass and loose-ball scramble, Doncic regained possession, coolly pulled up from about 28 feet and buried a 3 over Towns to put the Mavericks back up for good. Doncic had missed seven of his previous eight 3-point attempts leading up to the shot. Harrison Barnes hit a pair of free throws for the final margin.

"He's a talent," interim T'wolves coach Ryan Saunders said of Doncic. "Big-time players make big-time plays. He made one tonight and we're feeling it."

Watch: Luka Doncic Kicks Ball Into Stands After Whistle, Gets Ejected

Watch: Luka Doncic Kicks Ball Into Stands After Whistle, Gets Ejected Watch: Luka Doncic Kicks Ball Into Stands After Whistle, Gets Ejected

Luka Doncic celebrates his late run that lifted the Mavericks over the Rockets. Luka Doncic showing superstar qualities by heating up late with a solo 11-0 run to win this game for the Mavericks after starting cold. 26: Robert Covington, T ' wolves Mike DiNovo, USA TODAY Sports.

Dallas Mavericks . Legend of Luka grows as rookie barely misses triple-double in win Luka Doncic scored 29 points and hit the go-ahead 3-pointer to lead the Dallas Mavericks over the Minnesota Saunders is the son of the late Flip Saunders, the winningest coach in Timberwolves history.

According to ESPN Stats & Info, Doncic is the first rookie to make three go-ahead field goals in the final two minutes of regulation since Vince Carter on April 1, 1999.

Doncic is already the Mavericks' leading scorer and first among all rookies at 20 points per game. He is second among rookies with five assists and adds 6.7 rebounds a contest. Oscar Robertson and Michael Jordan are the only rookies in NBA history to average at least 20 points, six rebounds and five assists, according to basketball-reference.com.

"It's a big win for us," said Dallas coach Rick Carlisle. "It's been a tough stretch. This was a really good job as a team."

Follow Matt Eppers on Twitter @meppers_.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Legend of Luka grows: Doncic takes over with late heroics to lead Mavericks past T'wolves

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Legend of Luka grows: Doncic takes over with late heroics to lead Mavericks past T'wolves

Smith returns as starter, Mavericks hold off Clippers 106-98.
Dennis Smith Jr. had 17 points and eight rebounds in his return after a week away from the team amid trade talk, and the Dallas Mavericks beat the Los Angeles Clippers 106-98. Smith had two of his four assists on a layup and alley-oop dunk in the fourth quarter for DeAndre Jordan. 

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