The Dallas Mavericks have been one of the hottest teams in the NBA since the trade deadline, climbing to fourth in the West and nearly picking off the 3-seed from Golden State. They will host the Utah Jazz on Saturday at 1 p.m. ET in Game 1 of their first round series, but optimism about a deep playoff run among Dallas fans has become painful uncertainty about the status of their top star.
Luka Doncic has played well enough in 2022 to lock up an All-NBA spot despite a bit of a slow start to the season, and his dominance, coupled with better balance on the floor around him with the addition of Spencer Dinwiddie, gives the Mavs a chance in any series. Unfortunately, Doncic left Dallas’ season finale against San Antonio with a left calf strain that was confirmed by an MRI on Monday. The team, unsurprisingly, is not offering a timetable for his return, as there is some hope that it’s mild enough to give it a go on Saturday, but there likely won’t be an official update until right up to game time.
The Dallas Mavericks announced today that an MRI confirmed a left calf strain for Luka Dončić.
Dončić has begun treatment and there is no timetable for his return. pic.twitter.com/L7GPE4Lfe0
— Mavs PR (@MavsPR) April 12, 2022
Being without Doncic for any amount of time in the series would be fairly devastating for a Mavs team built around his abilities, and while Dinwiddie gives them someone who can create in Doncic’s absence, Dallas would quickly become an underdog against even a reeling Jazz team. We will find out Saturday whether Doncic will be out there for Game 1 or if this unfortunately timed injury will cause him to miss time.