Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic is expected to miss Game 1 of the Mavs' first-round playoff series against the Utah Jazz on Saturday afternoon with a strained calf, per Shams Charania of Stadium and The Athletic.
The 23-year-old has been a leader for the Mavericks all season. He averaged 28.4 points, 9.1 rebounds and 8.7 assists while shooting 45.7 percent from the floor and 35.3 percent from deep during the regular season. His performance earned him an All-Star selection for the third straight season.
The Mavericks' offense runs through Doncic, and the team invariably suffers when he is missing. Dallas went 8-9 in his absence during the regular season and had to rely on Jalen Brunson and Dorian Finney-Smith.
Brunson had a career year, but he's not nearly as productive as Doncic, averaging 16.3 points, 3.9 rebounds and 4.8 assists during the regular season.
In addition to Brunson and Finney-Smith, the Mavericks also turn to Spencer Dinwiddie, who was acquired from the Washington Wizards at the trade deadline.
If Dallas wants to make a deep postseason run in a difficult Western Conference that includes the Phoenix Suns and Memphis Grizzlies, it will need Doncic to remain healthy moving forward.