Luka Doncic is the real deal and he has the Dallas Mavericks sitting at (5-2) and second in the West. Even though we are early in the season, the Mavs have looked very promising to start. The pairing of Luka and Kristaps has a lot to do with that. And the bench has been one of the biggest reasons the Mavs are off to such a terrific start. But will this young ball club be able to sustain the early-season success? Right now it sure looks like it. So, are the Mavericks capable of being a top 5 team in the west? I believe so, and I’ll give you three reasons why.
1. Luka Doncic
After winning rookie of the year, Luka has been playing out of his mind! He is averaging 26.7 PPG, 9.9 RPG, and 9.1 APG. The 20-year-old is posting historic numbers, and he is just getting started. Luka Doncic will obviously be the key to the Mavs success, and he is very good in every aspect of the game. What Luka provides to the Mavericks is his ability to not only create for himself but for others as well. His play-making skills are second to none, his ability to find the open man is just a beautiful thing to watch. And that is what makes Luka so unique. He can take over games when needed and also give his team the best opportunity to win with his court vision. The Mavericks can rest easy knowing they have a closer in Luka Doncic. So, with that being said Luka is the biggest reason why the Mavericks are capable of being a top 5 team in the west, and he is playing at an MVP level. (If you don’t believe me watch this https://youtu.be/sGmgMnhgTVM)
2. Rick Carlisle
Head coach Rick Carlisle is entering his 11th season with the Dallas Mavericks. He was blessed with Dirk Nowitzki, and now he has Luka and Kristaps. Now that the Mavs have a good collection of talent, I expect Rick Carlisle to take the Mavs back to the playoffs. With Luka and Kristaps that is very possible. And Carlisle has also gone on record to say that he loves point guard Jalen Brunson. Which has to mean that Carlisle is ready to take the next step with this group of players. And with his track record, it is certain that he can coach these guys back to the post-season. Carlisle is the second biggest reason because you need a competent coach with championship pedigree. Plus that magnificent 2011 Finals victory should tell you that Carlisle is the man to get the job done.
3. Jalen Brunson and the bench
The second-year guard is playing like a seasoned vet when he comes off the bench. Brunson is a great second unit floor general that makes plays for everyone on the court. He is also very trustworthy when it comes to controlling the offense and taking care of the ball. If you think I’m joking check the stats. https://www.espn.com/nba/player/advancedstats/_/id/3934672/jalen-brunson Brunson’s assist per 40 is 6.5, which is an improvement from last year. As for the rest of the rotation players, well the unit is cohesive and ranks 4th in the league putting up 45.9 ppg. So, if the bench stays consistent this year, the Mavs can make some noise come April.
The Dallas Mavericks are off to a great start. And the excitement is back in Dallas. Even though this team is young and lacks playoff experience, the optimism is there. The ceiling for this team is the playoffs, and if they stay in the top 5 in the west. Then that will be a win for Mark Cuban and the rest of the organization.