Luka Doncic Puts ‘Amazing’ Teammate on Notice in Recent Shoutout

Luka Doncic Dallas Mavericks

Getty Luka Doncic #77 of the Dallas Mavericks.

After Jalen Brunson traded the Dallas Mavericks for the bright lights and glamor of New York City, many bemoaned that Luka Doncic lost the Robin to his Batman. It was a fair analogy; while Doncic was the main show in Dallas, Brunson was an able lieutenant, averaging nearly five assists per game and over 16 points per night.

But forget sidekicks. So far this season, Doncic has looked the part of Superman, heroically leading the Mavericks to a 6-3 record, including impressive wins against the Toronto Raptors and Memphis Grizzlies. Much like the Man of Steel, Doncic has been asked to do almost everything, leading to a career-high 43.1 percent usage rate.

But Doncic went out of his way last week to remind fans that he’s got four other players on the court with him during the game. In fact, he praised one player in particular after defeating the Utah Jazz 103-100.

“[Christian Wood is] an amazing player,” Doncic said after the win. “I told him last game we gotta use him more, and that’s on me. I think we used him a lot more in this game (against the Jazz). He shows what he can do. He was amazing today, and we just gotta feed him the ball more.”

Wood Making Case for Sixth Man of the Year

No, Christian Wood isn’t a starter for Dallas. But that doesn’t mean his impact isn’t felt on the floor. So far this season, Wood is chipping in a strong 15.6 points per game and 7.8 boards. Even better, 6.3 of those rebounds are coming on the defensive end, the lone bright spot in a problem area that has plagued Dallas this season.

The Mavericks are generally strong with Wood on the floor, as well. Lineups featuring Wood boast a plus-7.2 point differential and score 120.3 points per 100 possessions, which ranks in the 90th percentile of NBA lineups. Compare that to Dallas’ traditional starting five, which has JaVale McGee playing center over Wood, which comes in at 117 points per 100 possessions.

It’s all great news from Wood, who is in a contract year with Dallas. If he keeps playing this well, the Mavericks should have no problem offering him a new contract. And it’s hard to imagine Wood landing in a better situation than playing with Doncic, though he might prefer to start elsewhere.

That said, Wood’s been open about enjoying his time in a Mavericks jersey so far this season.

Wood Calls Mavericks Start ‘Great’

Speaking to reporters after Dallas’ win over the Jazz last week, Wood was giddy with praise for his new team.

“It’s been great, man. The team’s been showing me love … Luka’s been showing me love. He made an emphasis today to try to get me the ball more, so it’s amazing, man. I love playing with these guys.”

The feeling should be absolutely mutual for the Dallas Mavericks. Nothing like a double-double machine coming off the bench to make Luka Doncic feel like the Mavericks are building a solid future for him. It’s hard to imagine the Mavericks moving Wood for much of anyone, even Anthony Davis, given his output so far this season.

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