Luka Doncic is one of the most polished and well-rounded products in recent years. The NBA’s reigning Rookie of the Year also fills up a stats sheet.
In his rookie campaign last season, Doncic posted a solid 21.2-points, 7.8-rebounds and 6.0 assists campaign for the Mavs.
Retired NBA player and current ESPN analyst, Kendrick Perkins likes Luka’s upside this year. “Despite Luka doing his 29, 9 and 9 last year in the regular season; the worst thing that happened in the NBA was that Luka saw that he could go to war against the Clippers and he hung in there,” Perkins told me on the Heavy Live With Scoop B Show.
“Literally he was putting up some RIDICULOUS numbers against the Clippers, a team that was stacked full of guards that were supposed to be considered elite defenders — Kawhi Leonard, Patrick Beverley, Paul George… and he went to work on them. So, if you can go to work on them in a seven game series, he’s coming back like, “Shoot. I want all the smoke with EVERYBODY in the league.” and he should feel that way. The league gotta watch out man, that kid is SPECIAL.”
Doncic was selected with the third overall pick by the Atlanta Hawks in the 2018 NBA draft. Doncic’s rights were traded from the Hawks to the Mavs in exchange for Trae Young and a protected future first-round pick in 2019. Young and Doncic were exactly what their ball clubs needed.
In his rookie campaign last season, Doncic posted a solid 21.2-points, 7.8-rebounds and 6.0 assists campaign for the Mavs. “When you talk to him, he always wants to talk about getting rings,” Dallas Mavericks owner, Mark Cuban told me on the Heavy Live With Scoop B Show.
“And if you’re good enough to get a ring, then the MVP trophy will come with it.”
This offseason, the Mavericks acquired James Johnson in the offseason in a 3-team trade with the Detroit Pistons and the Oklahoma City Thunder. In the deal, the Thunder acquired Trevor Ariza from the Pistons and Justin Jackson, a 2023 second-round draft pick and a 2026 second-round draft pick from Dallas in exchange for Johnson.
Johnson, 33, has appeared in 634 career games (220 starts) with Chicago, Toronto, Sacramento, Memphis, Miami and Minnesota, averaging 8.0 points, 3.6 rebounds and 2.1 assists in 20.6 minutes per game, shooting 47.7 percent from the field. He was originally acquired from Minnesota on Nov. 20. Kendrick Perkins was a fan of the move. “That was a huge pickup,” Perkins told Heavy Live With Scoop B.
“And Dallas knows what they were doing. You have to get somebody that’s going to protect your star; who don’t have to worry about looking over his shoulder because he has a big brother like Johnson over there to watch out for him. So that was a power move by the Mavericks.”
The NBA season begins on December 22 and the Mavs open their season on the road against the Phoenix Suns. The Mavs will play the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on Christmas Day and the Clippers on December 27.