Tagged in: Luka Doncic

MaverricksĀ“Luka Doncic scores 24 in return from sprained ankle

Luka Doncic’s return after missing nearly five full games with a sprained right ankle finished with the point guard contributing 24 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists in the Dallas Mavericks’ 102-98 victory over the visiting San Antonio Spurs at American Airlines Center.

Doncic shot 9-of-23 (1-of-6 from three-point range) in 33 minutes en route to leading the 20-10 Mavs to victory. All five Dallas starters scored in double-digits, with Kristaps Porzingis adding 13 points and eight boards.

DeMar DeRozan led the Spurs with 21 points.

Doncic, who suffered the sprained ankle on Dec. 14 two minutes into his game versus the Miami Heat, didn’t look rusty after a 12-day absence.

Against San Antonio, Doncic played 32:39, about half a minute more than his season average.

”I’m not going to lie,” Doncic said. ”I was pretty tired.” Tired or not, he impressed Spurs coach Gregg Popovich.

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”I hate to say this, he’s not Magic Johnson but it’s Magic Johnson-like in the sense that he sees the floor in that same way. He’s got a real intuitive sense and you can’t teach that. He’s just got it and he’s great at it. I’m not trying to put the Magic Johnson pressure on him, he’s not ready for that yet but he’s doing a hell of a job.”

Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said that Doncic could have been even better.

”He had a few challenges early with rhythm and getting his legs under him. He got into a great flow as the game went on.”

Doncic said his ankle was good.

”I’m going to keep icing it. I’m young. I just want to play. I don’t want to miss no games.” The Mavericks (20-10) pulled within half a game of idle first-place Houston in the Southwest Division.

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