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Rising defensive beast gives Mavs' Luka Doncic high praise

Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic / Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
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Dallas Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic is unquestionably one of the toughest covers in the NBA. The 23-year-old has the world’s deadliest stepback 3-pointer and an elite ability to finish in the paint. Since coming to Dallas, Doncic has added a lethal mid-range game, featuring Dirk Nowitzki’s signature one-legged fadeaway that makes him impossible to guard without even factoring in his next-level passing.

Luka is the favorite to win MVP entering the 2022-23 season, and he is looking to prove he is the top player in the world as Dallas goes on another deep playoff run. There is no stopping number 77. Teams are just praying they can contain him at this point.

Pelicans forward and defensive standout Herb Jones sat down with HoopsHype’s Michael Scotto for a wide-ranging interview where he was asked about the toughest players to guard. Luka was the first name of three that the 6’8 forward mentioned. Get more below.

Rising defensive beast gives Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic high praise

Jones made it clear that there is a tough matchup every night before naming three players on his toughest-to-defend list. See his quote below.

"It’s pretty much a different beast night in and night out. If I had to cut it down to a few, I’d say Luka is a tough guard. KD (Kevin Durant). I’ll also say, Trae Young."

Jones was second-team All-Rookie last season, and he is already one of the league’s best defenders. He has the size and athleticism to guard one through five, and Jones is no stranger to locking down some of the league’s best scorers. The 24-year-old will likely make multiple All-Defensive teams during his NBA career, so it is massive praise to say that about number 77.

The Pelicans forward had this to say about where he draws his inspirations for his defense in the same interview.

Luka Doncic dropped 35 points in the Dallas Mavericks season-opener, and he figures to firmly be in the MVP race this season. Will he win the award? Stay tuned to find out, but fans can be sure that no defender is looking forward to facing the Mavs superstar this season.

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