Following the team’s loss to the Nets on Tuesday, Mavericks star Luka Doncic said he’s “got to be better” when speaking about his conditioning.
“People are going to talk about it, yes or no,” said Doncic. “I know I’ve got to do better.”
Doncic’s comment comes following a report from ESPN’s Tim MacMahon that the two-time All-Star reported to training camp weighing more than 260 pounds for the second season in a row. Doncic is listed at 230 pounds on NBA.com.
Doncic’s weight and conditioning were a topic of conversation on the TNT broadcast of the Mavs’ loss to the Nets, a game in which he finished with 28 points (9-21 FG), nine assists and six rebounds.
“I had a long summer,” said Doncic. “I had the Olympics, took three weeks off and I relaxed a little bit. Maybe too much. I’ve just got to get back on track.”
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The No. 3 pick in the 2018 NBA Draft, Doncic has quickly established himself as one of the league’s best players. He’s earned back-to-back All-Star selections, as well as back-to-back All-NBA First Team selections. He’s still posting averages of 25.5 points, 8.5 assists and 7.9 rebounds per game to start this season, but he’s shooting only 44.4 percent from the field, his lowest mark since he was a rookie.
Doncic got off to a similar start last season, averaging 27.2 points, 9.4 assists and 8.8 rebounds on 45.9 percent shooting from the field and 29.6 percent from 3-point range over his first 22 games. He averaged 28.0 points, 8.2 assists and 7.6 rebounds on 48.9 percent shooting from the field and 37.1 percent from 3-point range the rest of the way, powering the Mavericks to the fifth-best record in the Western Conference.
The Mavericks now stand at 11-12 on the season, placing them seventh in the Western Conference standings. They’ve lost three straight games and are 2-8 in their last 10.
Doncic was sidelined for three of those 10 games with an ankle and knee injury. He missed an additional game with ankle soreness. The Mavericks are 0-4 in games he’s missed so far this season.
The Mavericks start a three-game road trip on Wednesday. Following a meeting with the Grizzlies, they’ll face the Pacers and Thunder before returning to Dallas.