Last night the Dallas Mavericks earned victory over the New Orleans Pelicans, 118-97. As usual, Mavericks’ superstar Luka Doncic dominated on the court and closed out the game with 33 points, five assists and 18 boards. This was Doncic’s 11th game where he grabbed double-digit rebounds and his 18 boards were a career-high for him.
Doncic has created a lot of buzz this season. At only 20-years-old he is putting up unbelievable numbers. This is only his second year of playing in the NBA and he is already an MVP candidate. Through 20 games this season, the Slovenian player is averaging 30.7 points per game, according to the NBA. He now ties Lakers superstar LeBron James for the highest scoring average through 20 games of a season by a player age 20 or younger. King James was also 20 when reached this feat during the 2005-06 season.
Doncic is a Slovenian basketball player that was drafted to the NBA in 2018 by the Atlanta Hawks. In exchange for Trae Young and a 2019 first round pick, the Hawks traded Doncic to the Dallas Mavericks. The rookie made his season debut on October 17, 2018, and tallied 10 points, 8 rebounds and 4 assists against the Phoenix Suns. Three days later, Doncic recorded 26 points and 6 rebounds against the Minnesota Timberwolves. This game made him the youngest 20-point scorer in franchise history.
Doncic has always been a superstar. Before being drafted to the NBA, Doncic played for Real Madrid and according to Fansided, he was named MVP of both the EuroLeague and Liga ACB in Spain at only 19-years-old. Doncic has kept up this trend as an NBA player as well. After the Mavericks’ last victory over the Phoenix Suns 120-113, the 20-year-old tallied 42 points, 11 assists and nine rebounds, closing out the month of November averaging 32.4 points, 10.3 rebounds and 10.4 assists a game. After that game he joined Russell Westbrook (2x) and Oscar Robertson (8x) to become the third player in NBA history to average a 30-point triple-double for a calendar month (min. 5 games), according to ESPN Stats. So far this season he is averaging a total of 30.7 points, 10.3 rebounds and 9.4 assists.
The Mavericks currently place fourth in the Western Conference, 14-6. According to The Ringer, Doncic has led the Mavs to have the best offensive rating (116.0) in league history. The Mavericks struggled to find momentum at the very beginning of the season as their head coach Rick Carlisle had eight different starting lineups in the first 13 games. He has now found his five with, Doncic, Kristaps Porzingis, Dwight Powell, Dorian Finney-Smith, and Tim Hardaway Jr. Doncic feeds well off of this group and scores incredibly off of off-ball screens, scoring in the 94th percentile among ball handlers.
Yesterday, Doncic was also named Western Conference Player of the Month. According to Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Luka is is the first Mavs’ player to earn the award sine Dirk Nowitzki in April 2009 and he’s also the youngest player to ever win the award in the Western Conference.
“Every award means something to me, especially this one,” Doncic said per ESPN. “It’s a big thing for me, it motivates me. The team helped me, the team, the coaches. Without them, I couldn’t have won.”
The Dallas Mavericks play again tonight against the Minnesota Timberwolves who currently place seventh in the Western Conference, 10-9.