Luka Doncic Will Not Play for Mavericks vs. Bulls Due to Quad Injury

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistJanuary 3, 2021

Dallas Mavericks' Luka Doncic (77) reacts after being called for a foul against the Los Angeles Clippers during the first half of an NBA basketball first round playoff game Sunday, Aug. 23, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis, Pool)
Ashley Landis/Associated Press

Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic will not play in Sunday's game against the Chicago Bulls because of a quad contusion.

Marc Stein of the New York Times shared the news, while Tim MacMahon of ESPN provided an update from head coach Rick Carlisle:

Tim MacMahon @espn_macmahon

Luka Doncic's status for tomorrow's game vs. Rockets is TBD. Rick Carlisle: "We’ll just have to see how he feels when he gets up tomorrow and if tomorrow is going to be a possibility or not.” https://t.co/OL3fmYi1ee

Dallas can ill-afford to be without him for an extended period of time if it hopes to challenge the best teams in the Western Conference.

The 2018-19 Rookie of the Year took another step in his second season and averaged 28.8 points, 9.4 rebounds, 8.8 assists and 1.0 steals as one of the elite overall playmakers in the league.

He has followed with 24.4 points, 7.6 rebounds and 6.4 assists per night in 2020-21.

Doncic can impact the game in a number of ways with his ability to read defenses and exploit angles with his drive, facilitate for teammates when defenders collapse on his penetration and even hit from the outside when given too much space.

The Mavericks do not have anyone else on the roster who can do what Doncic does on a consistent basis, but they do have some pieces in the backcourt who can help them remain afloat until he is ready to return.

Jalen Brunson and Trey Burke will likely play point guard, while Tim Hardaway Jr., Tyrell Terry and Josh Richardson can provide additional ball-handling on the wing.