Luka Doncic's Triple-Double Leads Mavericks to 136-132 Win vs. Giannis, Bucks

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorAugust 9, 2020

Dallas Mavericks' Luka Doncic (77) celebrates a three point-basket with teammate Dorian Finney-Smith (10) during the fourth quarter of an NBA basketball game against the Milwaukee Bucks, Saturday, Aug. 8, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)
Kevin C. Cox/Associated Press

Luka Doncic' 36-point, 19-assist, 14-rebound triple-double propelled the Dallas Mavericks to a 136-132 overtime win over the Milwaukee Bucks at ESPN's Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando, Florida, on Saturday.

Dallas was down 119-112 with under two minutes remaining in regulation but went on a 7-0 run capped by two Doncic free throws to force overtime.

The Mavs opened OT on a 9-0 run, but the Bucks responded with seven straight.

Two Mavs possessions later, Doncic produced the play of the game (and maybe the entire NBA restart) with this between-the-legs pass to Maxi Kleber for an and-1, putting the Mavs up five.

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

This pass by Luka 🤯 https://t.co/B24eQya14S

Dallas held on for the win down the stretch and improved to 2-3 during the restart and 42-30 overall.

The Mavs, who have clinched a playoff berth, are two games behind the Utah Jazz for sixth in the Western Conference with three regular-season contests remaining.

The 55-15 Bucks have already clinched first in the East.


Notable Performances

Bucks F Giannis Antetokounmpo: 34 points, 13 rebounds, 5 blocks

Bucks G/F Khris Middleton: 21 points, 11 assists, 6 rebounds

Bucks C Brook Lopez: 34 points, 7 rebounds, 2 blocks

Mavericks G Luka Doncic: 36 points, 19 assists, 14 rebounds

Mavericks F/C Kristaps Porzingis: 26 points, 11 rebounds, 3 assists

Mavericks F Dorian Finney-Smith: 27 points, 11 rebounds, 5 assists


Doncic's Performance Defies Explanation

Doncic, a 21-year-old who has played fewer than two NBA seasons, just dropped a 39-point triple-double against reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks, who own the league's best record as well as a top-10 all-time point differential, per StatMuse.

Doncic has averaged 33.4 points, 11.6 assists and 11.6 rebounds per game since the NBA's restart began July 30. He's the youngest-ever player to earn a 35-15-10 stat line, per Stat Muse, breaking the mark of the original GOAT:

StatMuse @statmuse

Luka Doncic tonight: 36 PTS 14 REB 19 AST He passes Michael Jordan to become the youngest player with a 35/10/15 game in NBA history. https://t.co/6slue3y1BZ

Doncic has been the NBA's king of triple-doubles, and he might end as the league's all-time leader as well at this rate. ESPN Stats & Info posted more mind-boggling numbers:

ESPN Stats & Info @ESPNStatsInfo

Luka Doncic had 36 points, 14 rebounds and a career-high 19 assists in the Mavericks OT win over the Bucks. He now has a league best 17 triple-doubles this season. Doncic is the youngest player in NBA history to lead the NBA outright in triple-doubles. h/t @EliasSports https://t.co/aVwHYRSqhA

He also posted a stat line that no NBA player has produced since the league's inception in 1946, per Zach Kram of The Ringer:

Zach Kram @zachkram

34 points, 19 assists, and 14 rebounds in a game in NBA history, per @StatHead: Luka Doncic tonight That's the whole list.

He's simply invincible right now, to the point where he can throw between-the-legs passes in crunch time. Even Doncic didn't have much of an explanation for that one, per ESPN's Tim MacMahon:

Tim MacMahon @espn_macmahon

Luka Doncic on this between-the-legs dime in OT: "I don't know why I did it. I just did it. I saw it, I don't know. I didn't think about it before -- right in the moment." https://t.co/JL5PzeiceS

That wasn't the only Doncic highlight, of course, as he crossed over Wesley Matthews for this long-range jumper:

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

STOP IT LUKA 😳 (via @dallasmavs) https://t.co/4TPveDPnjJ

He also took a page out of the Rajon Rondo playbook early on by displaying his version of the Los Angeles Lakers point guard's patented move:

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

Luka does the Rondo fake 😨 (via @dallasmavs) https://t.co/godIfBOEcd

After the game, Antetokounmpo, who is all but certain to win his second straight MVP, gave praise to Doncic's effort:

Ben Golliver @BenGolliver

Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo on Mavericks’ Luka Doncic (36 points, 14 rebounds, 19 assists): “Makes his teammates better. Talented. Really talented. One of the most talented players I’ve ever played against.” https://t.co/AC6nKc42rz

Doncic's Mavs have three more games before the playoffs. It's a standard cliche to say that no team wants to face [insert lower-seeded sleeper team here] in the postseason, but that's exactly the case with Doncic and the Mavs, who will never be out of any game if the point guard's 30-point triple-doubles become a nightly norm now.


What's Next?

Dallas and Milwaukee will close their respective regular seasons with three games in four days beginning Monday.

The Mavs will face the Jazz at 3 p.m. ET, and the Bucks will play the Toronto Raptors at 6:30 p.m. in an Eastern Conference Finals rematch.