Dončić scores a triple-double in Dallas’ defeat
LOS ANGELES – Luka Dončić returned to action after he missed the first two games after the All Star break due to a sore ankle. And he returned in style – with a triple-double. The Dallas Mavericks ultimately lost to the Los Angeles Clippers 121-112. The Mavs have now lost fifth straight game.
Teenager from Slovenia got an early start. He scored the first points for the Mavs and ended with 28 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in his 33 minutes of action. That was Dončić’s fourth triple-double in his NBA career. “He’s not looking for attention,” coach Rick Carlisle said on Dončić. “He wants to be a great teammate. He wants to win games and he wants to be a part of something bigger than himself. That’s the way I see it.”
Dončić and Dirk Nowitzki were together in the starting lineup for the first time and each received massive cheers from the crowd.
Nowitzki made history. He became the fourth player in NBA history to appear in 1,500 games. He joined Robert Parish, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and John Stockton in that elite category. Clippers coach Doc Rivers called a timeout with 9,4 seconds remaining and encouraged the crowd in Los Angeles to give Dirk a standing ovation. “Dirk changed the game more than any big in our time because every big wants to shoot 3’s now and that’s due to Dirk,” said Rivers.
“I didn’t really understand much, but that was really humbling,” Nowitzki said postgame. “That was an emotional moment. I’m really appreciative.”
Dallas will host the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday.