The Dallas Mavericks suffered their ninth loss in the last 12 games on Friday night against the Indiana Pacers, and to make matters worse superstar Luka Doncic aggravated his left ankle injury. Luka admitted in his postgame that he should not have played in the fourth quarter.
The Mavs wasted no time in ruling out Doncic for Sunday’s game after the Oklahoma City Thunder. The 22-year-old star did not practice on Saturday, and he will miss at least one game because of the injury.
Dallas will need multiple players to step up to fill the void left by Luka. The Mavericks have lost all four games that they have played without Doncic.so far this season, and here is a look at who must step on Sunday night.
Luka Doncic (ankle) out vs. Thunder: Who needs to step up?
Jalen Brunson will return to the starting five in Luka’s place with Trey Burke handling the backup center minutes. Both men must take on additional playmaking and ball-handling duties. The Mavs offense can grind to a halt with Doncic on the bench. They need both to set things up.
Kristaps Porzingis will step into the leading scorer role. He played it in New York, and Dallas needs 25-plus to have a chance to defeat the rebuilding Thunder on Dec. 12.
The Mavericks need everyone in the rotation to be better without Luka. They must knock down jumpers and move the ball. Tim Hardaway Jr. will need 20-plus to keep Dallas in the game.
Stout defense will be key too. The Mavs can up the D by playing more Reggie Bullock and Maxi Kleber without Doncic. Their offense struggles to score, so Dallas likely needs to hold the opposition under 100 to have a shot.
The Mavs are looking to get back on track against the rebuilding Thunder that have won just two of their last ten games, but Dallas will have to do it without superstar Luka Doncic. Stay tuned for more updates on his ankle and so much more.