The Dallas Mavericks are looking down the barrel of being swept by the Golden State Warriors. While they are currently holding a double-digit lead at halftime of Game 4, the Warriors' deadly second-half performance has been a massive issue for the Mavs to contend with.
Everyone has been contemplating the impact of a playoff sweep on Luka Doncic's legacy. Luka has already proven his caliber as a playoff performer, ranking up with some of the greats. However, this is his first deep playoff run, and he's already upset the best regular-season team in the playoffs and is now tasked against the most experienced championship team of this generation.
Is getting swept something that people will hold against Luka, even though his team clearly overachieved to be here? Shannon Sharpe believed nobody would, as all of the greatest players in NBA history have been swept in the NBA Playoffs at some point in their career.
"Michael Jordan got swept twice, LeBron got swept twice, Kobe got swept three times, Magic got swept in the Finals twice, Bird got swept, Kareem got swept three times, Shaquille O'Neal has been swept six times. Most people's Mount Rushmore, LeBron, Jordan, Magic, and Kareem. Even if you want to throw Kobe in there, all those guys have been swept at least once."
"I don't think it's going to have an impact. If Luka was going out there averaging 7 points a game, you can be like 'damn, Luka coughed the biscuit', but he's giving you basically 34-8-8, so I don't know what else you want him to do in that position."
Sharpe made a good point about how all these greats got swept when they went up against a better team, which Doncic is doing right now.
Basketball is a team sport at the end of it all, and everyone needs to do their part in avoiding a sweep. The Mavericks have done everything they can, but a slog of a playoff that has seen 6 members of the rotation play heavy minutes through tough opponents means their gas tank had to become empty, eventually.