The Dallas Mavericks and their fans are hoping for the best when it comes to the status of All-Star guard Luka Doncic, who left Sunday’s 130-120 win over the Spurs with a left calf injury late in the third quarter and did not return.
According to ESPN’s Tim MacMahon, Doncic, who had 26 points, eight rebounds and nine assists against the Spurs, will get an MRI on his calf this afternoon.
Dallas did have a shot at the third seed if the Warriors lost to the Pelicans. However, that did not happen as Golden State defeated the Pelicans in New Orleans, so the Mavericks will now be the fourth seed in the West and battle the fifth-seeded Utah Jazz in the first round of the playoffs.
Game 1 is Saturday afternoon in Dallas.
Jalen Brunson, who had 18 points, six rebounds, and five assists Sunday night, believes Doncic will find a way to be on the court Saturday in Dallas for Game 1.
‘”For some reason, I feel like he will be ready to go,” Brunson said after the game. “Knowing the competitor he is, I’m sure he will be ready. It’s unfortunate, but with a competitor like that, you can’t keep him down for long. We’re happy that, obviously, we won the game and things like that, but we will leave this for tomorrow and go from there…
“He’s probably a little upset that he is hurt. But, I went up to him, shook his hand, and asked if he is good. He looked at me and said, “Yeah.” Everybody just kind of looked at each other, nodded, and I had to go to a meeting. Like I said, I feel like he will be ready. We are talking playoff basketball now; no one is going to sit. If you can play, you can play. He’s a competitor, and he will be ready.”
Many may criticize Mavs head coach Jason Kidd for having Doncic in the game with the Mavs up 16 points in the third, but according to the Hall of Famer, injuries happen.
“I thought the guys did a good job there at the end of the third quarter to extend that lead,” Kidd said. “With that being said, injuries are part of a game; absences are part of the game; we’ll see how [Luka Doncic] feels. The nice thing is that we have won homecourt, so we don’t have to travel, and we got a week until we play.”
Look, you can criticize Kidd for having Doncic out there, and it might be justified, but to Kidd’s point, injuries happen, and again, Dallas was trying to get the third seed.
At this point, Dallas will have to wait and see if their best player will be available against the Jazz.
Listen below Brunson talks Doncic and win over San Antonio: