NBA 2018-19: 3 Talking points from the Los Angeles Clippers' Win Over the Dallas Mavericks
DeAndre Jordan was returning to LA as a Maverick after spending his first ten seasons in the league with the Clippers. The emotion in the arena was palpable as we witnessed one quality basketball game between two talented professional teams.
The Clippers held their nerve down the stretch to imprint a 125-121 victory on the visiting DJ & his Mavericks side. Luka impressed in ways unexpected from a teenager, but the Clippers ended up snapping their four-game losing streak with an impressive win in this one.
Ironically, this was the Mavericks' fourth consecutive loss as they drop to an even 15-15 on the season at the 11th spot in the West. They have now lost five of their last ten games and host a pitiful 2-12 (win-loss) record on the road while staying a dominant 13-3 at home. They are currently six games behind the Western Conference leaders in the Denver Nuggets.
The Clippers, however, are still in good shape with an 18-13 record in the 6th place out West, even after dropping four straight before this one. The former Western Conference leaders have been disappointing lately, losing seven of their previous ten clashes.
Let's draw out some key takeaways from this breakthrough Clippers victory in DeAndre's return to LA:
#1 Luka Doncic is turning into something much more than just the 'Rookie of the Year'
Doncic has clearly separated himself from the rest of his rookie draft class, as he now averages a blistering 18.8 points, with 6.6 rebounds and almost 5 assists per game on the season.
This was his fourth 20+ score in the last five games, as the Clippers lost four of their last five. In this loss against Doc's Clippers, the Slovenian finished dropped 32 points, dished out five assists and also recorded four steals. He shot a decent 10-of-20 from the field and netted half of his three-point attempts. He drew contact all night, attempting a game-high 13 free throws and making nine of them.
He nailed a few dazzling stepback three-pointers and showed the confidence with which he can play on the road right in his very first season in the NBA. The teenager has lived up to every single expectation that was stacked against him before the season started and has portrayed what three years worth of professional experience in the Euroleague looks like.