3 studs, 2 duds from Mavericks' second-straight preseason loss to Timberwolves

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5. Stud - Luka Doncic

Luka Doncic was doing Luka Doncic things in Saturday's game against Minnesota.

Doncic has improved every season since being in the league, and his offseason work has been evident during both of the Mavericks' preseason games. He focussed on conditioning and cutting his weight some this summer, and he didn't come into the season overweight as he had in the past.

Luka's step-back threes looked good, and he ended up scoring 18 points in the first half. He also went 6-7 from the free-throw line, and that will hopefully transition into him being a consistent free-throw shooter during the regular season.

This is an area that he has struggled with during his five-year NBA career, and it's one part of his game that could take him to the next level if he can become a great free-throw shooter.

Doncic's passing was also on point, as he always seems to find the open shooter on the perimeter. He and Lively II connected on a lob in the first half as well, and that is something that fans will love to see during the regular season.

Doncic's in-between game also looked good, as he scored well on drives and used his body well to create space.

Luka's first two preseason games indicated that he is ready for a great season, and his elevated play could take Dallas to another level.