Last night the Dallas Mavericks defeated the Detroit Pistons, 122-111, at the Mexico City Arena. Mavericks’ superstar Luka Doncic received plenty of praise from Mexico City as the sold out crowd of 20,064 fans began chanting “MVP” just 2:31 minutes into the game. Doncic struggled at the very beginning of the game as he missed his first four free throws. The 20-year-old blamed it on the city’s altitude.
“The first two minutes were tough, hard,” Doncic said per Dallas Morning News, referring to Mexico City’s altitude. “But we came here to get the win, and that’s what we did.”
The Mavericks wound up picking up the pace and so did Doncic. He led the team with 41 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists. This was Doncic’s eighth triple-double of the season, the first triple-double and highest scoring performance ever recorded in Mexico City. Not only did Doncic make history in Mexico City, he also tallied his second 40-point triple double. Lakers’ superstar LeBron James is the only other NBA player to record a 40-point triple double before the age of 21 and he only met that feat once, according to Bleacher Report. Doncic is currently averaging 30.4 points, 9.9 boards and 9.3 assists a game.
The Mavs are now 17-7 and place third in the Western Conference.
Dallas Mavericks vs. Detroit Pistons
The Mavericks have now won their last 11 of 13 games, including their win against the Pistons. The game started off with both Doncic and Pistons’ star Blake Griffin addressing the crowd. Doncic did so in Spanish and wooed over everyone in the arena.
Once the Mavericks stepped onto the court they meant business as they outscored the Pistons by seven in the first half, 65-58. Both Doncic and Seth Curry recorded 23 points in the first half. Curry ended the game with 30 points on 11-of-15 shooting. Kristaps Porzingis also had a great game with 20 points, one assist and eight rebounds. Doncic and KP fed well off of each other as Doncic made incredible ally-oop passes to him that put on an incredible show.
“He’s a lightning bolt everywhere; this is not new territory for him ,or for us,” Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle said. “He’s one of the most popular players in the world. He’s one of the best players in the world. So he creates a lot of excitement wherever he goes.”
Before Luka’s 41-point game, Phoenix’s Devin Booker held the record for the most points scored in Mexico City, scoring 39 points in the arena twice, per Dallas Morning News. This was also Luka’s 20th straight game in which he tacked on at least 20 points, five rebounds and five assists, the longest such streak in NBA history. It is clear why at only 20-years-old and only in his second year of playing for the NBA that Luka is one of the three top contenders to earn this season’s NBA MVP award.
“The guy’s a great player,” Carlisle said. “He’s a blast to watch. He’s a great competitor and he’s a winner. That’s all the components of a guy that anybody would like to watch.”
The Mavericks will play against the Miami Heat tomorrow at home at 5:30 p.m. PST.