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Mavericks' Luka Doncic: It Would Be 'Enormous Accomplishment' to Win NBA MVP Award

Doric SamSeptember 22, 2022

Maja Hitij/Getty Images

Entering his fifth NBA season, Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic is already a perennial contender for league MVP, and he's expected to once again be in that conversation.

While speaking to Malika Andrews on Thursday's episode of NBA Today, Doncic was asked how important it is to him to win an MVP award.

"If I could be named MVP, it would be an enormous accomplishment, I would be so happy," Doncic said (2:52 mark). "But, you never know. I hope I'm in that conversation."

Doncic is coming off a strong showing in the FIBA EuroBasket 2022, but Slovenia was eliminated in the quarterfinals by Poland in a surprising upset. He averaged 26.0 points, 7.7 rebounds and 6.6 assists in seven games during the tournament, including a 47-point outburst that is the second-highest total in the history of European championships.

While individual success is achievable, Doncic also told Andrews that he has big expectations for the Mavs as a team.

"My expectation is to make it to the [NBA] Finals, first of all," he said. "I know it's gonna be really, really hard, but we gotta believe, everybody's gotta believe it. And if the whole team believes, then it can probably happen, but it's gonna be really hard."

The 23-year-old is the most important player on the Mavericks. He led the team with averages of 28.4 points, 9.1 rebounds, 8.7 assists and 1.2 steals last season, but he was also hobbled with injuries throughout the year. Doncic missed 17 games in the regular season and three more in the playoffs, and the team went 10-10 in his absence.

Dallas had a 52-30 record and made a surprising run to the Western Conference Finals last season, but the team is set to look different this year. The Mavs lost second-leading scorer Jalen Brunson after he signed with the New York Knicks as a free agent. They acquired promising 26-year-old power forward Christian Wood from the Houston Rockets, but it remains to be seen how he will mesh with a ball-dominant guard like Doncic.

The Mavericks are set to begin their season against the Phoenix Suns, who they defeated in seven games in the conference finals, on Oct. 19.

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