Luka Doncic puts up 42, records yet another triple-double to lead Mavericks past Spurs
Luka Doncic puts up 42, records yet another triple-double to lead Mavericks past SpursDoncic finished with yet another triple-double on Monday night, leading the Dallas Mavericks to a 117-110 win against the San Antonio Spurs with a career-high 42 points, 12 assists and 11 rebounds.
Second-year players often make a leap in the NBA; it's expected, to varying degrees, depending on how their rookie years went. However, few could have predicted Luka Doncic's second-year would look like this.
Through 14 games, the 20-year-old Doncic is averaging 29.9 points, 10.6 rebounds, and 9.4 assists per game, very nearly a 30-point triple-double per game.
Those numbers are only increasing. On Wednesday, Doncic scored 35 points and added 10 rebounds with 11 assists in just 26 minutes, helping the Dallas Mavericks beat the Golden State Warriors, 142-94. Doncic outscored the Warriors by himself in the first quarter and had 33 points, 5 rebounds, and 6 assists on 10-of-11 shooting at halftime.
Mavericks guard Luka Doncic inches into LeBron James stratosphere with 42-point triple-double
Mavericks guard Luka Doncic, who is only 20 years old, is off to a blistering start, registering his sixth triple-double in 13 games this season.His 42 points, 12 assists and 11 rebounds make for an eye-popping stat line alone, and then factor in the flair of Doncic's passing and clutch gene he continues to show.
This served as an encore to a 42-point, 11-rebound, 12-assist performance in a win over the San Antonio Spurs on Monday.
Doncic's performance on Wednesday as the best quarter and best half by a player this season.
Legler went on to praise Doncic, comparing him to all-time greats.
"I'm seeing a Larry Bird type, with his pace and the way you can't speed him up, his shooting ability from deep, but if Larry Bird had a tighter handle and a better first step," Legler said. "That's really what Luka Doncic is." He added Doncic's ability to score and beat opponents with his playmaking is LeBron James-esque.
Some questions surrounded Doncic heading into the 2018 draft about his athleticism and ability to get shots off on bigger, faster opponents than what he encountered in the Euroleague (where he won MVP as a teenager). Doncic still doesn't wow with his athletic ability, but his skills are so refined at 20 years old that defense doesn't seem to matter.
Doncic has 33 first-half points, Mavs hammer Warriors 142-94
DALLAS (AP) — Luka Doncic scored 33 of his 35 points in the first half and had yet another triple-double to help the Dallas Mavericks rout the short-handed Golden State Warriors 142-94 on Wednesday night. Doncic fell a point short of matching Dirk Nowitzki’s team record set Nov. 3, 2009, against Utah. In just 17 minutes, Doncic was 10 for 11 from the floor, making 6 of 7 3-pointers, and hit 7 of 8 free throws. The second-year star from Slovenia had 22 points, five assists and five rebounds in the first quarter alone. He played only 25 minutes total, but still managed 10 rebounds and 11 assists.
Doncic's step-back three has become even more lethal this season.
As Legler said, Doncic is never hurried, even on drives to the rim.
And his vision makes him one of the best passers in the league already.
The decimated Warriors didn't present the toughest challenge on Wednesday, but this was not a one-off occurrence for Doncic.
The stats are impressive any way you spin them. His 30-point triple-double against the Warriors was the quickest in NBA history. He's the youngest player to produce back-to-back 30-point triple-doubles, beating Oscar Robertson, who did it at 22 years old. He has averaged a 30-point triple-double over his last 10 games, joining Robertson, James, Michael Jordan, and Russell Westbrook as the only players to do so. He's the only player in the top 15 in points, rebounds, and assists per game this season.
"We were talking about if he can keep this up, and I was like, 'Yo, if somebody can keep this up, it's him,'" Mavs guard JJ Barea said (). "He plays on the ground. He's super smart. He's shooting the ball well. He's finishing really well. I see him keeping it up. It's not hard for him to do this right now. He's not forcing crazy s---. It's just coming. That's why I think he can keep this up. He's making it look easy."
5 lessons Luka Doncic has taught the NBA
Donic’s doubters were always going to be wrong.Last year, I wrote about all the skills that made Doncic special and put in context how much more impressive his EuroLeague Rising Star and MVP awards were than previous European stars. He’d been a professional athlete since he was 16 years old, and a standout since he was 17.
Warriors rookie guard Eric Paschall, who is 23, noted tothat Doncic is still quite young.
"The reality is, he's so dominant at 20. He's younger than me."
Doncic's production, however, has become routine to Mavs coach Rick Carlisle.
"He's a very special player on a special roll," Carlisle said. "There's not much else to say. This isn't a big news flash now. This is getting to be pretty normal."
It won't often be that Doncic has nights as he did on Wednesday, but there isn't a lot to suggest that a regression is coming. He's not shooting with crazy efficiency - 48% from the field and 33.8% from three. A majority of Doncic's three-point attempts are difficult, but he's also shooting just 31% on catch-and-shoot opportunities, per Second Spectrum data. That's a below-average number for a naturally good shooter. He's averaging nine free throw attempts per game, a number that could decrease, but Doncic's arrhythmic game should continue to draw fouls. He's shooting 81.5% from the line, a sustainable number.
There's not much to suggest this is fluky from Doncic. A 20-year-old who dominated overseas and was projected as, is dominating at the NBA level after just 86 career games. He may still be getting better.
Three Things to Know: Luka Doncic is putting up age 20 stats we haven’t seen since LeBron
Doncic is averaging 30.6 points, 10.1 rebounds and 9.8 assists a night this season.1) Luka Doncic is putting up at age 20 statistics we haven’t seen since LeBron. In his second season in the NBA, at age 20, LeBron James had a season for the ages: 27.2 points per game, 7.4 rebounds and 7.2 assists a night, and a PER of 25.7, all on his way to making his first All-Star game and, at season’s end, All-NBA (second team).
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Luka Doncic is no longer intimidated facing NBA superstars because he's become one himself, and even Dirk Nowitzki is impressed by the rapid progress.