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Luka Doncic limps off floor with calf strain, status for playoffs unknown

San Antonio Spurs v Dallas Mavericks

DALLAS, TEXAS - APRIL 10: Luka Doncic #77 of the Dallas Mavericks is attended to my Casey Smith head trainer in the second half against the San Antonio Spurs at American Airlines Center on April 10, 2022 in Dallas, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Tim Heitman/Getty Images)

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This is exactly why so many playoff-bound teams sat star players on the season’s final day.

Dallas had something to play for — a Mavericks win combined with a Suns’ loss would have moved Dallas up to the No. 3 seed — so Luka Doncic was out on the court Sunday. Then this happened.

Doncic did not return to the game with what the team described as a calf strain.

The Mavericks are off until Saturday at 1 p.m. Eastern, when they tip-off their 4/5 series against the Utah Jazz. The Mavericks have looked like the most dangerous team outside Phoenix in the West of late and likely would be the betting favorite against the Jazz, but only if Doncic is healthy. There was no update on his status postgame, but Jeff Stotts of In Street Clothes gave some perspective.

If Doncic is unable to play in the first game or two of this series, it would be a huge swing — the Mavericks offense is 4.4 points per 100 possessions worse without Doncic this season. He is an MVP-level player who is the hub of everything they do on the offensive end of the court.

All eyes will be on the Mavericks’ injury reports this week.