It didn’t take long for Luka Doncic to make his mark on NBA history books. He set several records in his first NBA season and put together one of the greatest rookie campaigns ever.
But can he reach even greater heights? Here are 12 NBA records that I think Luka can break at some point during his career. Some of these records are pretty amazing, but then again, so is Luka.
1. Most Points Scored in an Overtime Period
The current record for the most points scored in an overtime period is 16, set by Gilbert Arenas in 2006. (Stephen Curry actually scored 17 points in an overtime period, but that was in the Playoffs, so it’s a separate record.)
With Luka’s ability to get hot in big moments – 11 straight points, anyone? – it’s not too far-fetched to believe that Luka could break this record.
After all, when Steph set the Playoff record, it’s not like he got on fire from the 3-point line. He hit three three-pointers, but he also got two points from a put-back, two points on a fast break, and two free throws. Really, he just did all the scoring for his team. Luka certainly has the ability to put the team on his back like that.
2. Most Points In a Playoff Run
Michael Jordan owns the record for the most points in an NBA Playoff run. In 1992, he averaged 34.5 points in 22 games for a total of 759 points.
To break this record, a player would have to make it to the Finals and have a few long series. The more games he plays, the fewer points he needs to average.
If Luka’s path to the Finals includes two 7-game series and two 6-game series, he would need to average over 29.2 points a game to break the record. If the path includes one 7-game series, two 6-game series, and one 5-game series, he would need to average over 31.6 points to break it.
Doable? Sure. Doesn’t seem that hard!
3. Most Points in a Triple-Double
James Harden holds the record for the most points in a triple-double with 60. The most Luka has currently is 43. (His regular season high with a triple-double is 42 points.)
Sure, it’s an extra 17 points, but I think we would all say that Luka is going to have a 60-point game at some point in his career.
Assuming he stays healthy, it’s safe to say he can get even better and more efficient as a scorer. With his passing and rebounding skills, a 60-point triple-double seems within reach.
This record isn’t that old, which makes me think it’s closer to the realm of possibility.
4. Most Assists In a 5-Game Series in the Finals
The record for the most assists in a 5-game series in the NBA Finals is held by Magic Johnson who had 62 assists versus the Chicago Bulls in 1991. He averaged 12.4 assists per game in that series.
This record is tough to break because not many Finals series last only five games. In the 73-year history of the NBA Finals, there have only been 18 5-game series.
But, if that did happen and if Luka and the Mavericks made it to the Finals, it’s possible that Luka could average over 12.4 assists per game. If they’re winning a Finals series in five games, that means they have a pretty good team and probably enough talent to get Luka over a dozen assists.
5. Most Assists in a Game
Scott Skiles set the record for the most assists in an NBA game. In a game against the Denver Nuggets in 1990, Skiles had 30 assists.
Yes, 30 assists is a lot.
Like a lot, a lot.
But the random nature of this record makes me believe that someone is bound to break it. I mean, it’s not like an all-time great like Magic Johnson, John Stockton, or Jason Kidd holds this record.
What makes this record tough to break is that the player’s skill is only part of the equation. There are a lot of other factors he doesn’t control. For example, when Scott Skiles set this record, he played 44 minutes. On top of that, his teammates were on fire. They shot 57% altogether.
But with the pace of today’s game and the space teams play with, I can see someone, preferably Luka, breaking this record.
6. Most Consecutive Games with 10+ Points
Scoring 10 or more points for a long stretch of games doesn’t sound hard, until you realize that LeBron James has done it in almost 1,000 games in a row. Yes, LeBron has scored 10+ points in 973 consecutive games. That’s not just skill, it’s health, and that’s really why this record is so lofty.
LeBron’s record started in 2007…and we’re now in 2020.
Luka would have 28 games in a row like this if he hadn’t sprained his ankle in the first quarter of a game early in the 2020 season. Assuming Luka can stay healthy, I think he can break this record – whatever it turns out to be when LeBron retires or ends his streak.
7. Most Consecutive Triple-Doubles
The record for the most consecutive triple-doubles was set by Russell Westbrook who had 11 straight in the 2019 NBA season. That was also the season Westbrook averaged a triple-double.
Luka’s longest triple-double streak is at two games. However, there have been a few times when he was a few assists or rebounds away from having four in a row.
Because of the pace of today’s game, Luka’s all-around skills, and his high usage rate, I can see him breaking this record.
8. A 20/20/20 Game
There have been two instances of a 20/20/20 game. Wilt Chamberlain (who else?) had 22 points, 25 rebounds, and 21 assists in 1968, and Russell Westbrook had 20 points, 20 rebounds, and 21 assists in 2019.
The closest Luka has come to this was 36 points, 19 assists, and 14 rebounds. Now, that was a game for the ages. No player has recorded a stat-line like that ever. But could he do it again, just with one more assist and a few more rebounds? I’m saying yes. Because I’m a Mavs fan, that’s why. Come at me.
9. 40-Point Scoring Duos in a Playoff Game
Luka will need help to achieve this one, but with Kristaps Porzingis on the team, I think they can do it.
There have been six 40-point scoring duos in an NBA Playoff game:
- Elgin Baylor (45) and Jerry West (41) in 1962
- Sleepy Floyd (42) and Hakeem Olajuwon (41) in 1988
- Clyde Drexler (41) and Hakeem Olajuwon (40)
- Reggie Miller (40) and Jalen Rose (40) in 2000
- LeBron James (41) and Kyrie Irving (41) in 2016
- Anthony Davis (47) and Jrue Holiday (41) in 2018
It’s rare air, for sure. But Luka had a 42-point game in his Playoff debut, so I’m confident he can do that again. Can Kristaps get there? He’s scored 40 points once in his career. He’s gotten close a few other times, with one 39-point performance and three 38-point performances.
Since both players are still young and getting better, I think they can accomplish this.
10. The Most 4-Point Plays Made In a Finals Game
Yeah, not just the most 4-point plays in a game. Not the most 4-point plays in a Playoff game. But the most 4-point plays in a Finals game.
Ray Allen had two 4-point plays in the 2013 NBA Finals. If James Harden ever made it to the Finals, I think he could probably break this record. So that’s why I’m saying Luka will break it.
Subtle shade. Don’t @ me.
11. Pair of 30-Point Scorers On the Same Team In Consecutive Games In the Finals
Again, Luka would have to rely on a teammate for this.
There have been three instances of 30-point scoring duos in consecutive games in the NBA Finals:
- Jerry West (40 then 36) and Elgin Baylor (36 then 39) in 1962
- Kevin Durant (33 then 31) and Stephen Curry (32) then Klay Thompson (30) in 2017
- LeBron James (39 then 31) and Kyrie Irving (38 then 40) in 2017
The record shows that it doesn’t have to be the same two players every time. I think Luka and Kristaps could do this together, but if the Mavericks have another dynamic scorer on the team, he could be one of the players to help tie this record.
12. Players to Win an Olympic Gold Medal, EuroLeague/European Champions Cup, and NBA Championship
The good thing is, Luka already has one of these! He won a Euroleage championship with Real Madrid in 2018. All he needs now is an Olympic gold medal and an NBA title! Easy!
Only two players have won an Olympic gold medal, a Euroleague title or European Champions Cup, and an NBA title – Bill Bradley and Manu Ginobili.
But we’re talking about Luka Doncic here. He has the potential to be one of the greatest European players ever and one of the greatest NBA players ever. It’s that kind of crossover talent that it would take to achieve this.
It will be tough for Luka to break any of these NBA records. I’m not saying he’ll break all of them, but I think he could manage to achieve one or two.