Dallas Mavericks coach Jason Kidd shared his thoughts on Luka Doncic’s injury recovery after Wednesday’s practice.
The Dallas Mavericks and Utah Jazz do not play Game 1 of their first-round playoff series until Saturday. There’s still uncertainty surrounding how quickly Luka Doncic will be able to return from his calf strain.
Doncic suffered the calf strain in Sunday’s 130-120 win over the San Antonio Spurs. With five full days to work with between the Mavericks’ regular season finale and the day of Game 1, there isn’t much time in terms of a potential turnaround.
Given the nature of Doncic’s injury, around-the-clock treatment is required as the tip-off for Game 1 continues to approach. There hasn’t been significant breakthroughs in the process yet, but regardless, there’s been positivity from the Mavs about Doncic’s outlook.
In an interview with WFAA after the Mavericks’ practice on Wednesday, coach Jason Kidd offered the latest on Doncic’s injury recovery as well as stating that he’s got the right mindset right now.
“He rode the bike today. He’s in good spirits. Again, nothing different from yesterday. We believe we’re going in the right direction,” Kidd said.
“It’s going to be day-by-day, but he is doing better and he’s in good spirits. He’s laughing and joking. When I see that, I truly believe we’re going in the right direction.”
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During the portion of Wednesday’s practice available for the media to observe, Doncic was seen riding the exercise bike next to Maxi Kleber. This is the most physically active Doncic in front of reporters since suffering his injury.
With no timeline yet available for Doncic’s return, the Mavericks will have to prepare for each of the main possible outcomes. If Doncic is unable to play, the starting backcourt would consist of Jalen Brunson and Spencer Dinwiddie.
Dinwiddie has played a pivotal role for the Mavericks since being acquired by the team in part of the mid-season Kristaps Porzingis trade. While his skill-set can help fill some of the void, there’s no true way to replace a top-five player in the NBA.
It’s difficult to project a potential timetable for Doncic’s return without knowledge of the severity of his calf strain. If it’s a Grade 1 strain, the recovery process can range anywhere from one-to-three weeks.
The Mavericks are scheduled to play Game 2 of the series late Monday night (8:30 p.m ET) on NBA TV. As far as Game 3 is concerned, there is a two-day gap with the travel involved to get to Salt Lake City, which is great news for Doncic and the Mavs.