EuroBasket is over, which means that Dallas Mavericks fans have to wait until the start of the season to watch Luka Doncic play basketball again. Some will be happy that he’s no longer at risk for injury, but it’s also disappointing that fans won’t get to see him play for a while.
Doncic and the Mavericks made it all the way to the Western Conference Finals last season, as it marked the Slovenian superstar’s first trip past the first round of the playoffs. And heading into next year, Dallas should be able to make another run.
Their roster is shaping up nicely, and during an appearance on ESPN’s NBA Today, Doncic sounded off on a few of his teammates. He shouted out Dorian Finney-Smith, Spencer Dinwiddie, and Christian Wood when discussing the roster and their chances heading into next year.
“We have great players on our team, there are plenty [of] very underrated guys that I think should be talked about more,” Doncic said. “I don’t think so, we have a great team. Number one, Dorian Finney-Smith. He’s worked really really hard, he’s one of the best defensive guys, if he’s open, he’s going to make the shot. Spencer is going to have a big role this year. Talking about Christian Wood, he’s a new player in Dallas but I think he’s going to be huge for us.”
The Mavericks extended Finney-Smith’s contract last year, traded for Dinwiddie at the deadline, and made a deal for Wood ahead of this year’s NBA Draft.
In addition to discussing the roster, Doncic also spoke about a personal goal ahead of the season.
Doncic Wants to Win MVP
Obviously, Doncic is one of the best players in the NBA. He’s still very young, but he’s already established himself in the top tier of guys in the league. When the topic of potentially winning an MVP award came up, Doncic said that it would be a major accomplishment.
“Yeah, hopefully. [Winning] MVP is unbelievable. If I could be named MVP, it would an enormous accomplishment, I would be so happy, but you never know,” Doncic said.
Doncic has been named to three All-NBA First Teams in a row and has been an All-Star in each of the last three seasons as well. By those standards, he’s been a top-five player in the league every season except for his rookie year.
However, while winning the MVP award would be a huge honor for Doncic, he has bigger, more team-oriented goals in mind.
Doncic: ‘We Gotta Believe’
During his interview on the show, Doncic was asked about expectations for the upcoming season. And despite a strong Western Conference playoff picture, Doncic said that his expectation is an appearance in the NBA Finals.
“My expectation is to make it to the Finals, first of all,” Doncic said. “I know it’s gonna be really, really hard, but we gotta believe, everybody’s gotta believe it. And if the whole team believes, then it can probably happen, but it’s gonna be really hard.”
It’s not going to be easy for the Mavericks to make it all the way to the Finals, but with Doncic at the helm, anything is possible.