Luka Doncic Injury Update: Latest News on Mavericks Star’s Knee Sprain and Other Injuries

Game 2 of the NBA Finals is tonight. The Dallas Mavericks dropped Game 1 of the series to the Boston Celtics in embarrassing fashion, being outscored in the first quarter by 17, the largest first quarter deficit in NBA Finals history. To make matters worse, star guard Luka Doncic had been downgraded to questionable ahead of Game 2, nursing three injuries: a thoracic contusion, a right knee sprain, and left ankle soreness. That status has now changed ahead of Game 2. The star will suit up against the Boston Celtics.

Doncic has not been fully healthy since very early in these playoffs and has been listed as questionable multiple times through the first three rounds. He was seen visibly uncomfortable during practice ahead of Game 2 and fans have started to bite their nails wondering if they might not see him play tonight.

If the Mavericks want any hope of winning the NBA title, or even beating the Celtics a single time in the Finals, they will need Doncic to be on the court. Even if Doncic isn’t fully healthy, he’s still one of the best players on either team. Dallas’ hopes and dreams of winning an NBA championship post-Dirk Nowitzki live and die with Doncic.

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Injury Update: Luka is available for Game 2

About an hour before tipoff, Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd told reporters that Doncic would be available for Game 2. He added that Doncic playing was not a foregone conclusion but after the guard went through his pregame warmup, he was cleared to play.

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Doncic also claimed that the team was ready to adjust in case Doncic was unavailable. Luckily for Mavs fans, no such adjustment will need to be made.

This concludes the update. Previous reporting continues below. —

Doncic’s injury status does not alter Game 2 odds

The most telling indictment of an injury’s severity is undoubtedly how sportsbooks react to the news. With general wisdom and the fact that DraftKings has not changed their line at all (remains steady at Dallas +6.5) indicates that oddsmakers not only expect Doncic to play but for him to be playing at a high enough level to where it has no impact on the outcome of the game.

Sports Illustrated’s Peter Dewey writes that it’s possible Doncic’s injury designation is just “gamesmanship” by the Mavericks, but still expresses concern over the downgrade. Still, Doncic’s injury should have tilted the odds in Boston’s favor at least a little bit, but they haven’t budged, meaning it is very likely we see Doncic on the floor, playing solid minutes tonight.

Luke Doncic downgraded amid new health issue

Though Doncic had been dealing with a knee sprain and ankle soreness since the first round of these playoffs, the thoracic contusion added to the injury report is new.

So, what is a thoracic contusion?

This is a chest bruise caused by a fall or blow to the chest. While that doesn’t seem very serious, it could develop into something worse with continued trauma. If it is something to be taken seriously, it could affect Doncic’s ability to do things like rebound or drive into scoring lanes. Any contact could cause a flare up and force Doncic to miss time, which Dallas obviously does not want.

Doncic’s absence from the open portion of the shootaround is concerning, but if Doncic is not feeling right, he would want to stay as inactive as possible until necessary. It’s likely that Doncic is dealing with some added pain or discomfort, but not something that will keep him out of the NBA Finals.

When is Game 2 of the NBA Finals?

Game 2 of the 2024 NBA Finals tips off tonight, June 9, at 8 p.m. ET in Boston. WFAA reporter Jonah Javad claims that Doncic does not normally warm up until an hour before tipoff, giving him ample time to heal up before the game.

It seems likely that Doncic will play tonight, regardless of his status being downgraded to questionable. The question is whether or not he will be at his best.

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