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Luka Doncic backed to be even better next season by Dallas GM Harrison

Doncic will head off to play for Slovenia this summer ahead of the next NBA season

Luka Doncic

Dallas Mavericks general manager Nico Harrison believes Luka Doncic will return even stronger next season as the franchise aims to go one better than their NBA Finals defeat to the Boston Celtics.

The Mavs may have lost 4-1 in the Finals to a rampant Celtics, but Doncic returned a series of stunning performances to become the first player in NBA history to lead the league in total points, rebounds, assists and steals during a post-season.

The only blip was a below-par display in Game 3 when he fouled out in the fourth quarter following a running dialogue with the referees. He responded by leading Dallas to their sole series victory in Game 4.

Harrison said of the Slovenian superstar: “We’re not where we’re at without Luka. 

“I think that’s important to point out, and we also won’t be able to get where we want to go without the best version of Luka. 

“If you look at a guy who after Game 3 had the world on his neck – the scrutiny, which was crazy, the amount of scrutiny that he had to face – for him to focus in and do what he did in Game 4, I just think it just shows the character of him. He’s willing to fight through adversity, and I think he’s going to continue to get better.

“He’s 25 years old. I think just going through the Finals, him seeing what he needs to do to be at his best in the Finals after going through a gruelling end of the year and then three tough, tough [playoff] match-ups, I think you’re going to see the best version of him.”

What’s next for Doncic?

First, Doncic will head off to Greece to play for Slovenia in a qualifying tournament for the Paris Olympics.

“That’s probably one of his biggest joys,” Harrison added. “I think as long as he can walk, he’s probably going to go out there and play for them.”

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Jon Fisher

Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.