The Dallas Mavericks are currently down two games to the Phoenix Suns in this second round of the NBA playoffs. And if the Mavs are eliminated from the playoffs once again, most won’t bat an eye to the superstar Luka Dončić, but why is that?
The Slovenian is now in his fourth season in the NBA—and has been balling since day 1 in the league. He’s never averaged less than 20 points in a season, he makes buzzer beaters left and right, and boogies on players every night. We love watching him play, but career wise, he hasn’t been able to bring his team to the promise land.
Yes, Luka is young, but so is Jayson Tatum, and the Celtics face criticism nearly every year. Ja Morant has played half the seasons as Luka but is under a microscope for every loss or mistake he makes.
Not to make this completely about race but it’s worth putting the idea out there. We’ve seen Mark Cuban brought on Kristaps Porzinigis, Wesley Matthews, and other key players to try and figure out what works—no luck on any of them. If this were anywhere else, sports analysts would be scrutinizing the typical superstar.
Perhaps most basketball fans didn’t expect the Mavs to beat the Suns in this series, but if they get swept, are people going to hold Luka accountable? LeBron James didn’t even make the playoffs and we still here his name on First Take every day.
Will we scrutinize Luka the same way if he took the Kevin Durant route? A superstar that’s a great scorer but can’t get a title, so he joins a already great team to win a chip. LeBron did it, but are we going kill Luka if it happens?