Paul George Praises Luka Doncic After Historic Playoff Debut: 'He's the Future'

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistAugust 18, 2020

Dallas Mavericks' Luka Doncic (77) works the floor against Los Angeles Clippers' Paul George (13) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Thursday, Aug. 6, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis, Pool)
Ashley Landis/Associated Press

Luka Doncic is 21 years old and just dropped 42 points in a playoff game against two of the best two-way players in the league in Kawhi Leonard and Paul George.

He turned plenty of heads even though his Dallas Mavericks lost to the Los Angeles Clippers 118-110 Monday. George certainly noticed, calling Doncic the "future" during an interview with ESPN after the game:

ESPN @espn

"He's the future." Paul George with high praise on Luka Doncic after the Clips win. https://t.co/NMfIlJlTud

Doncic started off slow as the Clippers scored 18 of the game's first 20 points, and he even went to the locker room with an apparent leg injury. However, he returned, battled through some turnover issues in the early going and spearheaded a comeback.

Dallas was up by double digits in the second quarter largely because of Doncic's ability to adjust to the Clippers' pressure and find openings for himself and teammates. The Mavericks were still up by five in the third quarter with him leading the way until Kristaps Porzingis was ejected for picking up a second technical foul on a questionable call.

The game turned from there, and Leonard (29 points, 12 rebounds, six assists and three steals) and George (27 points) led the Clippers to victory.

George's three-pointer in the final minute that pushed the lead to eight was a serious blow to Dallas' comeback efforts, but Doncic was still impressive throughout.

He will have an opportunity to pull his Mavericks even in the series in Wednesday's Game 2.