Without a doubt, Doncic has been one of the most exciting players to watch all season. He is completely taking over the league, albeit with a silly smile on his face. He is a killer, a clutch scorer, and everything in between.
But he is still too young to be the best player in the league, and the Mavs are still not going anywhere. Still, the young man’s production has been phenomenal as he is almost averaging a triple-double with the following stat-line of 30.3 ppg, 10.1 rpg, and 9.2 apg while shooting 47.8% from the field.
These are clearly MVP numbers, and one of the best stat lines we have seen in a long time.
In fact, it resembles Russell Westbrook’s MVP season numbers although Doncic is shooting a much higher percentage. Luka is simply the best young player in the league today, and it is truly amazing to think about how the sky’s the limit for him. He is already the primary ball-handler for his team, and also the main scoring option.
To be fair, the Mavericks do not have much scoring outside of Kristaps Porzingis (who is not the same unicorn as he was in New York) and a very inconsistent Tim Hardaway Jr.
Doncic has a huge load to handle, and he has performed admirably so far.
But where does he rank among the NBA’s best? Is he a top-five player? Or could he possibly be the best player in the world?
His numbers, production, impact, and even winning record this far (above .500) surely indicate that he is a top 10 player and there is no doubt about that. But it gets a little bit difficult when we start nearing the top five or six. Let’s analyze which players are ahead of Doncic at the moment.
Harden is a better player than Doncic at the moment. He is simply an unstoppable scoring machine who can drop 50 every single night in a seemingly effortless manner. Harden can carry an offense on his own, and he does not find it difficult to draw fouls and get to the line all game long.
Harden’s mastery of getting to the line for easy points puts him ahead of Doncic. Not to mention, he has been the driving force behind a very strong Rockets team that has constantly had one of the best records in the league. Luka is not there yet.
Without a doubt, James is a better player than Doncic right now. Even though Doncic is a bad man, and LeBron even admitted it himself, he cannot control the tempo of a game like James can. LeBron is currently leading the league in assists and has basically taken over the role of point guard for his team. While Doncic has done the same for the Mavs, LeBron is just better at this moment.
Both players are also good at attacking the rim, but James is simply stronger and larger and is more effective with that as well. Overall, Luka has some more work to do to catch LeBron James.
Even with load management and a lot of rest, Kawhi Leonard is still a better player than Luka Doncic. Leonard paces himself better than anyone in the league because he knows that the Clippers can win without him for now and that he is the most valuable in the playoffs. But when he is on the court, he is a winner. It really is that simple.
Doncic cannot affect the game defensively like Leonard, and cannot completely control the game like him either. When Leonard plays, he is almost always the best player on the court and the one who wins. That is tough to beat.
Davis, thanks to his dominance on both ends of the floor, is a better player than Doncic. He is long, athletic, and extremely skilled; the main reason why the Lakers are the best team in the league right now. As great as LeBron is, Davis is younger and more able to carry a team offensively as we have seen. Davis is also very impactful defensively and has already come up with the game-winning plays on that end.
Luka is scoring more points than AD but certainly has to put more effort to do so. AD can almost always score inside and is truly an amazing talent. Doncic is very close, but AD is also a better player.
Lastly, refining MVP The Greek Freak is a better player than Doncic. In fact, he is the frontrunner for the MVP award once again this year. He is simply phenomenal and is leading the Bucks to the best record in the East once again. Giannis cannot be contained and is the most freakish athlete we have seen since young LeBron James. The entire team is built around Giannis, and he has almost always delivered for them.
As good as Doncic is, and he is no doubt inching closer to the top five on a weekly basis, he cannot compare to the reigning MVP right now. Giannis does it all on both ends of the floor at the highest level, and might even be the best player in the league right now.
Overall, Doncic is a great player with exceptional talent who one day will be a top-five player, and it might even come sooner than we think. But he has a little more work to do if he wants to be regarded as one of the top five, although he has cemented his place at sixth.