6 Dallas Mavericks players who must play better to beat the Clippers

Los Angeles Clippers v Dallas Mavericks - Game Four
Los Angeles Clippers v Dallas Mavericks - Game Four / Tim Warner/GettyImages
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1. Luka Doncic

Saying that MVP candidate Luka Doncic needs to play better may confuse some people considering that he is nearly averaging a triple-double, but it's clear that his knee injury is holding him back and even he admitted to letting Kyrie Irving down in this series.

In four games against the LA Clippers so far, Doncic is averaging 29.0 points, 9.8 rebounds, 8.5 assists, and 1.0 steals per game while shooting 38.6 percent from the field and 26.5 percent from downtown. Statistically speaking, this has been the worst playoffs of Doncic's career, and his shooting inefficiency has hurt his team.

Doncic's improvement as a 3-point shooter was evident during the regular season and he was one of the best shooters in the NBA, but it has been a different story in the playoffs. He isn't going to his step-back as much as he usually does, and he has to get back to playing at an elite level.

Doncic and Kyrie Irving both have to play together and get going early, and everything about Doncic's game (outside of his defense in Games 1 and 2) has been just a fraction of his full capability.

Everyone knows how great Doncic can be when he is at his best, and he has been outplayed in the first four games by Irving. This isn't something that anyone expected, and fans should be optimistic for Doncic as he will hopefully find a way to bounce back and help his team advance to the next round.

For all the latest on Luka Doncic, Kyrie Irving, and the Dallas Mavericks this season, stay tuned.