Doncic Blitz Fuels Bagley Debate
December 9, 2018
Dallas trailed Houston by eight with three minutes left when Luka Doncic, who had been shooting errantly, nailed a three-pointer from the left corner and another out front and a floater in the lane and then the pièce de résistance, a step-back three to lift his team to victory. I assume most viewers of the Kings-Pacers game were able to see this live since, fortuitously, halftime coincided with the Doncic daggers. His boosters in Sacramento should still keep in mind that the suddenly-maligned Marvin Bagley hit eight of nine shots on Friday and even during Saturday’s debacle in Indianapolis made two of four, giving him 10 of 13 for the weekend. Regarding (phantom) fouls in the Pacers game, the referees whistled Bags every time he exhaled and, to be consistent, every time he inhaled. This was some of the most farcical refereeing I’ve seen since notorious (and best forgotten) game six of the 2002 Western Finals against the NBA-anointed Lakers. But I digress. It’s understandable that any group of fans would want Doncic on their team. Indeed, every franchise in the league would be delighted to have him. At the same time, in fairness to Bagley, let’s acknowledge he’s hitting 52.5 percent from the field this season while Luka’s shooting 43.6. In the last five games, even after his Houston heroics, Doncic is converting 32.7 percent from the field. These too-recent stats – last night, last week – obscure the big picture that foretells Luka Doncic and Marvin Bagley both becoming all stars. And the real debate will probably someday be: which hall of famer should the Kings have taken?