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Mavs’ Luka Doncic upgraded to probable vs. Pelicans

Dallas Mavericks rookie standout Luka Doncic has been upgraded to probable for Monday’s game against the New Orleans Pelicans, per Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News:

Doncic told Mavericks reporter Gerry Fraley that he felt a “pop” when he went up to collect a rebound in last Sunday’s loss to the Houston Rockets. Despite getting the all-clear to take the floor against the San Antonio Spurs just two days later, Doncic suffered one of his worst shooting nights of the season, going 1-7 beyond the arc and a stunning 1-9 from the free throw line.

Although Doncic nearly recorded a triple-double against the Denver Nuggets with 24 points (including a huge and-one dunk in the closing seconds), 11 rebounds and nine assists, he once again struggled from 3-point range and the charity stripe.

Doncic was held out of Saturday’s game against the Cleveland Cavaliers, but he appears likely to play against the Pelicans on Monday.

Still, given the tenuous feeling surrounding Doncic’s injury and how much of a premium must be placed on his health, the Mavericks will be sure to monitor his status as often as possible.

The 19-year-old from Slovenia has become a sensation in the NBA with his charisma and lethal stepback jumper. Doncic is averaging 21.0 points, 7.4 rebounds and 5.7 assists per game, and has already established himself as one of the best crunch-time players in the league.

Doncic is practically a shoe-in to win the NBA’s Rookie of the Year Award, and figures to form a tremendous tandem with newest Mavs acquisition Kristaps Porzingis when both are healthy and available next season.