Luka Doncic Meets Child with Rare Muscle Condition He Helped Raise $2.2M For

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistDecember 2, 2019

Dallas Mavericks' Luka Doncic (77) dribbles during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Los Angeles Lakers Sunday, Dec. 1, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press

It's not often beating LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers in a Western Conference showdown is the second-most important thing someone did on a given day, but that was the case for Luka Doncic on Sunday.

The Dallas Mavericks star met the 22-month-old child for whom he helped raise more than $2.2 million prior to his team's 114-100 win at Staples Center:

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

Luka helped raise over $2.2M for 22-month-old Kris from Slovenia, who has a rare muscle condition. Today before the game he got to meet him 🙏 (via @townbrad) https://t.co/dKFJFNqvW2

Luka Doncic @luka7doncic

Made my day!🙌❤️ https://t.co/J3nZ8BrsmS

Brad Townsend of the Dallas Morning News provided more context, noting Kris is from Slovenia and was diagnosed with the rare genetic disease 1 spinal muscular atrophy. Doctors told his parents, Mateo and Anna, that Kris needed Zolgensma gene therapy, which cost $2.125 million as of 2018.

Mateo and Anna started a crowdfunding campaign, and Doncic, the Slovenian national volleyball team and Slovenian musicians became aware of it and helped raise the money.

There was enough for the treatment—which happened last week—and three months of living expenses in Los Angeles while Kris is monitored at the UCLA Medical Center.

"It's more important for me than the basketball, honestly," Doncic's mother, Mirjam Poterbin told Townsend. "Because he shows every time that he's really a good person. This is important to me."

As for the basketball, Doncic continued playing at an MVP level and finished with 27 points, 10 assists, nine rebounds and three steals in the win.