What does Luka Doncic’s 60-point triple-double say about the Mavericks?

Luka Doncic #77 of the Dallas Mavericks. (Photo by Tim Heitman/Getty Images)
Luka Doncic #77 of the Dallas Mavericks. (Photo by Tim Heitman/Getty Images) /

Luka Doncic produced the first 60-20-10 triple-double in NBA history on Tuesday against the New York Knicks. His 60 points helped him surpass Dirk Nowitzki’s record for most points by a Maverick in a single game. A career-high 21 rebounds capped off the league’s first 60-20 stat line. The icing on the cake was ten assists to complete his 52nd career triple-double.

The shorthanded Knicks led by ten points at the top fourth. Doncic started the game off with the hot hand. But in the fourth quarter, he played like the fate of humanity lay in his hands. Doncic was involved in 16 of the Mavs’ 23 points in the final period, including the game-tying basket with a second to spare. A perfectly executed “miss the free throw, get the rebound and get the two-point basket” play. Doncic did not lose his touch, as the Mavericks sealed the deal in overtime to get the 126-121 victory.

Doncic punching in milestone numbers has become a common occurrence at this point. But the undeniably big elephant that is the lack of help he has in Dallas stays in the room. The 23-year-old scored 47% of the Mavericks’ points in the comeback effort. His teammates’ scoring numbers are as follows; 25, 19, 11, 5, 3, 2 and 1. Although there is no denying his greatness at such a young age, Doncic doubling the second most points by a teammate on Tuesday sticks out like a sore thumb.

Doncic scored seven of the Mavs’ 11 overtime points. Although a win is a win, this is becoming an infamous example of a team becoming so reliant on a single player. With Tuesday’s win, the Mavericks have gone up to the sixth seed in the Western Conference, but it is incredibly difficult to imagine them in the same spot without Doncic.

While Spencer Dinwiddie and Christian Wood are reliable, the weight they take out of Doncic’s shoulders is not enough. Potential moves that could be beneficial include trading Reggie Bullock to New York for Cam Reddish. Bullock has not been the most productive for Dallas this season. Meanwhile, Reddish, who is a solid scorer has been frustrated with the lack of minutes he is getting in New York. Although this does not provide a true second scoring option, it gives the Mavs another bucket-getter. As for Bullock, he returns to a familiar environment with the Knicks, which could potentially be beneficial for him.

Another good trade target is Detroit’s Bojan Bogdanovic. While Detroit has not expressed interest in trading Bogdanovic, if the Mavs put together the right trade package, the rebuilding Pistons might green-light this swap. The eight-year veteran is averaging 20.9 points per game while shooting 48.3% from the field. Forming a tandem with him and fellow European Doncic would be a big boost for Dallas.

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The Mavericks are averaging 111.4 points per game as a team, and Doncic scores a third of that averaging 33.6. Doncic leads the Mavericks in points, rebounds, assists, and steals per game. It is entertaining to watch as a spectator, but you can not ignore the issues staring them in the face. They need to get him help before his back gives in from carrying the franchise.