Ranking each Western Conference playoff team based on their best player

Denver Nuggets v Dallas Mavericks
Denver Nuggets v Dallas Mavericks / Ron Jenkins/GettyImages
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2. Dallas Mavericks

Best player: Luka Doncic

A stat-stuffing machine, Luka Doncic was a man on a mission this season. He averaged 34/9/10 on 49 percent from the field and a career-high 38 percent from three-point range. He is well on his way to yet another All-NBA selection and is also a likely MVP finalist. After missing the playoffs last season, Doncic clearly craved a return to the NBA’s biggest stage. 

For his playoff career, Doncic is averaging 33/9/8 on 47/37/69 shooting splits. In elimination games, he averages 35 PPG, the highest single-game average in NBA history. He also has eight 40 point games and has scored below 20 points only twice out of 28 playoff games. He is without a doubt one of the league’s most dangerous playoff performers.

The knock on Doncic is his defense and while he posted the second highest defensive win shares of his career with 3.5, it is still not his bread and butter. However, the Mavs have been one of the NBA’s hottest teams on both ends of the floor since the All-Star break, as they were eighth in offensive rating and 12th in defensive rating.

If Doncic keeps up his elite postseason reputation, they will be a team to watch out for. He would also be number one on this list if it weren’t for a certain big man in Mile High.