Luka Doncic's triple-double makes NBA history in Mavs' win over …

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Luka Doncic’s triple-double makes NBA history in Mavs’ win over Bucks

By Ali Thanawalla

August 08, 2020 10:11 PM

Another game, another insane, eye-popping stat line from Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic.

About Doncic's

Luka Doncic's triple-double makes NBA history in Mavs' win over …

About triple-double
In basketball, a double-double is a single-game performance in which a player accumulates ten or more in two of the following five statistical categories: points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocked shots. The first “double” in the term refers to the two (double) categories and the second “double” refers to accumulating ten or more (typically double digits) in that category. Similarly, a player records a triple-double, quadruple-double, and quintuple-double when accumulating ten or more in three, four, or all five of the statistical categories, respectively. While double-doubles and triple-doubles occur regularly each NBA season, only four quadruple-doubles have ever officially been recorded in the NBA, and a quintuple-double has never officially been recorded at the professional, collegiate, or even high school boys’ level. A similar coined term is the five-by-five, is the accumulation of at least five in all five statistical categories.

The 21-year-old Serbian star put on a show Saturday night in the Mavericks’ 136-132 overtime win over Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks in Orlando, Florida.

Doncic finished with a staggering 36 points, 19 assists and 14 rebounds. It was his 17th triple-double of the 2019-20 NBA season, and in the process, Doncic made history.

Luka Doncic's triple-double makes NBA history in Mavs' win over …

Just look at a few of the shots and passes Doncic made late in the Mavs’ win over the Bucks. It looks like a varsity player going up against the JV team.

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Two years into Doncic’s NBA career, it’s safe to say the Phoenix Suns, Sacramento Kings and Atlanta Hawks are kicking themselves for passing on the superstar. In the case of the Hawks, they actually drafted Doncic at No. 3 overall, but traded him to the Mavericks for Trae Young and a 2019 first-round draft pick, which they used on Cam Reddish.

The Suns drafted center DeAndre Ayton No. 1 overall, while the Kings infamously decided to take forward Marvin Bagley over Doncic at No. 2.

In hindsight, those three decisions are turning out to be franchise-altering. Ayton is averaging 17.2 points and 10.7 rebounds through two seasons, while Bagley has dealt with injuries and has played in 75 games his first two seasons. He’s averaging 14.8 points and 7.6 rebounds per game. Neither has come close to making the type of impact Doncic has made.

[RELATED: Barnes takes blame for Kings’ poor performance]

Young is an NBA All-Star and has the potential to be really good, but Doncic looks like he’s on a different level right now. Even Young took notice of what Doncic did Saturday night.

Doncic isn’t an MVP finalist this year, but it’s only a matter of time before he’s holding that trophy. He’s getting better each year, and he’s going to make the teams that passed on him pay for the next two decades.

Tags: Atlanta Hawks, Phoenix Suns, Sacramento Kings, NBA, Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks

Damian Lillard, Paul George have beef after late missed free throws

By Alex Didion

August 08, 2020 3:18 PM

Oakland native Damian Lillard isn’t afraid to speak his mind, especially when criticism is thrown his way.

The normally clutch Lillard, who has ended multiple NBA playoff series with a game-winning shot, missed two key free throws late in the Portland Trail Blazers’ loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday.

Patrick Beverly, who himself is famous for mixing it up with opposing point guards, had some words for Lillard from the sideline.

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Beverly was a member of the Houston Rockets team Lillard sent home in the first round of 2014 NBA Playoffs, and Clippers star Paul George was the man contesting Lillard on his buzzer-beater that eliminated George and the Oklahoma City Thunder from the postseason last spring. Lillard brought both of them up during his postgame interview with TNT’s Taylor Rooks, and George clapped back in the comment section.

George and the Clippers have a playoff spot clinched and currently would be the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference, while Lillard’s Trail Blazers are 1.5 games behind the Memphis Grizzlies for the eighth and final playoff spot.

As with many NBA beefs in recent years, the discourse continued in the comment section.

George also posted a message on his Instagram story addressing the back-and-forth.

[RELATED: Lillard wanted name of Oakland’s Oscar Grant on jersey]

George, a six-time All-Star, suffered a gruesome compound fracture in his right leg during a 2014 Team USA scrimmage in preparation for the FIBA World Cup, causing him to miss most of the 2014-15 regular season.

Lillard’s rare failure in the clutch benefited the Kings, as a win by the Trail Blazers would have eliminated Sacramento from postseason contention. The Kings currently are two full games behind Portland for the ninth spot in the West, with three games remaining before the playoff field is solidified.

Hopefully for NBA fans everywhere (except in Sacramento) Lillard and the Trail Blazers find a way into the postseason so we can get another chance to see him go up against Beverly, George and the Clippers.

Tags: Patrick Beverley, Los Angeles Clippers, Portland Trail Blazers, Paul George, Damian Lillard, Sacramento Kings, NBA

Harrison Barnes places Kings’ flameout in Orlando on himself, veterans

By James Ham

August 07, 2020 6:11 PM

The team that began the Orlando bubble saying “we want all of that smoke” just learned that smoke usually is accompanied by fire.

At 1-4 in the NBA restart, the Kings have shown they aren’t ready for the fire and they might not be ready for prime time.

“I think it starts with individual accountability, just in terms of the effort we are putting out there on a consistent basis,” veteran Harrison Barnes said following the Kings’ 119-106 loss to the Brooklyn Nets on Friday. “It’s hard to win in this league and to be consistent, you have to do that every single night.”

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The Kings have talent. But rarely is that enough at the NBA level.

You have to play together. You have to play for one another. In the end, you have to bring energy and effort every night or a team of no-names, like the squad the Nets threw on the court Friday, will embarrass you.

It’s a common theme with the Kings. They played a tremendous game in a 140-125 win over the New Orleans Pelicans on Thursday, scoring 49 points in the first quarter

Just over 24 hours later, they looked like a collection of players that had never played together. There was no chemistry. No passing. No rotations on defense.

Just forced and ineffective basketball.

“Frustration is high,” Barnes admitted. “I don’t know if it’s disappointing, but it’s frustrating. Coming into this game, we knew it was more mental than physical. It was meeting force with force. It was being disciplined. It didn’t matter what scheme we had or what game plan we had if we didn’t have any effort.”

Who’s to blame for the Kings’ flame out in Orlando? Coach Luke Walton has already drawn plenty of criticism, but at some point the players themselves have to take ownership for the things they can control on the court.

Following the loss to the Nets, Barnes fell on his sword as one of the leaders of the team. He placed the blame on himself and the rest of the veterans.

“I’ll be the first to say it’s definitely on us as veteran players — guys like myself,” Barnes said. “I’ll take responsibility for that because I’ve been to the playoffs, I’ve been to the Finals. I know the energy and effort it takes to win games and if you don’t bring that, you lose.”

“As a group, we have to learn that you can’t just turn it on,” he added.

[RELATED: NBA puts money where its mouth is for racial, social justice]

The Kings have a choice. They can pout and get their lunch handed to them for the next three games. They can also play spoiler and leave the bubble on as high of a note as possible.

Either way, this isn’t the outcome the Kings were hoping for. They have had a few bright spots, like the play of De’Aaron Fox and Bogdan Bogdanovic, so the experience isn’t a total wash. But after five games, any talk of playoffs is over and changes likely are coming during the abbreviated offseason.

Tags: NBA, NBA Playoffs, Harrison Barnes, Luke Walton, Sacramento Kings, James Ham