DALLAS – One of the main limiting factors the Dallas Mavericks faced in their first-round clash with the LA Clippers was the load that Luka Doncic had to carry.
Doncic had to attack often at such a pace that he posted a staggering 39.1% use rate in the playoffs. He averaged 35.7 points, 7.9 rebounds and 10.3 assists with great efficiency, but faced many fourth quarters where he looked exhausted.
The heavy offensive load that Doncic has taken on is something Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd now sees as something that could be adjusted. He intends to get Doncic’s advice on playing without the ball to help relieve the pressure.
“I think when you look at the numbers he’s got the ball a lot, and he’s a special player when he has the ball,” Mavericks coach Jason Kidd said. “But as we continue this summer and this learning process, I’m going to ask him different questions to get his opinion on playing without the ball, not having to lift the ball every time to start the game, to get him from the second side. “
One of the reasons Kidd has potentially involved Doncic more off the ball throughout games is to keep him cool for the duration of his NBA career, but only for singles matches.
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“Because when you watch the fourth quarter, it gets burnt out sometimes. Not all the time, but it can wear out. Sometimes we can take it for granted that he’s 22 and feel like he’s not going to tire. But there is also a longevity to this piece, in that we want it to play for a long time. “
Since the Mavericks are well documented pursuit of a second ball handler, there should be more opportunities for Doncic to be involved in off-ball actions, or to start gaining full possession.
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Luka Doncic has proven to be very effective when involved in off-ball screens, transfers and post-ups. All of the many variations present in these situations will be ideal for Mavericks to turn to in addition to simple precision games.