Dallas Mavericks forward Luke Doncic drained a 51-foot buzzer-beater just before halftime during Monday night’s contest at the Brooklyn Nets. The rookie out of Slovenia whipped up a shot from half-court, which banked in with just 0.5 seconds to go on the clock.
The heave was one of the few bright spots in the first half for the Mavericks, as they trailed the Nets 65-47 heading into the locker rooms. Brooklyn ended up routing Dallas 127-88 to move to 33-33.
Doncic finished with 16 points (6-of-16 shooting), including 3 triples. He added 6 rebounds and a pair of blocks, as well. Forward Dwight Powell led the Mavericks with 20 points, and chipped in 6 rebounds and 6 assists.
Doncic was drafted at the No. 3 spot in the first round of the NBA Draft by the Atlanta Hawks. He was immediately traded for guard Trae Young out of Oklahoma and sent to Dallas. He is averaging 21 points, 7.2 rebounds and 5.6 assists in his debut season.
His Mavericks are just 27-36 and 10.5 games back in the Southwest Division. They also stand 7 games back from the No. 8 seeded San Antonio Spurs. While not technically eliminated from the NBA Playoffs, they have less than one percent of chance of making it at this point, according to Playoff Status.
The rookie’s presence has already been a net positive, however. Aside from his nightly highlights, he has helped improve Dallas’ win total by 3 games compared to 2017-18. Team Rankings projects a 36-46 finish, a full 12-win improvement.