The Warriors were big on the Pelicans on Sunday, nearly extinguishing the Mavericks’ hopes of claiming the No. 3 seed. Just in case Golden State somehow failed, Dallas led the Spurs by 16 points. The Mavericks were less than 15 minutes away from finishing their best regular season since winning the championship more than a decade ago.
That’s when Luka Doncic stretched his calf.
The injury will apparently sideline him for Game 1 of Dallas’ first-round series against the Jazz on Saturday.
Shams Charania of The Athletic:
The last concerning Doncic: https://t.co/bEFYKs2gmk
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) April 14, 2022
Obviously, this is a huge setback for the Mavericks. Doncic is one of the best players in the NBA, the creator of much of the Dallas offense.
What a break for the Jazz’s weak perimeter defense.
Luckily for the Mavericks, they have a few other good point guards in Jalen Brunson and Spencer Dinwiddie. But if you use fewer multi-point queues, filling the minutes on the wing will be a bigger challenge. Reggie Bullock and Josh Green could get more playing time. (Injured Tim Hardaway Jr. is particularly missed at this time.)
Game 2 of the series is Monday. There are two days off before Game 3 on Thursday.