Luka Doncic currently has one of the highest usage rates in NBA history.
Doncic’s usage rate has hovered around 40% this season, and it’s currently 39.1%. The only NBA players to record a higher usage rating over the course of a full season were Russell Westbrook in 2016-17 (41.7%) and James Harden in 2018-19 (40.5%). Also, Doncic is playing a career-high 36.8 minutes per game.
Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd has raved about Doncic’s incredible start, but he has also expressed concerns about his superstar’s unsustainable workload. He recently told reporters that Doncic will break down “before Christmas... if we keep this going."
“One or the other is going to show, if he’s human or not. We believe he’s human,” Kidd said recently, according to Mavs.com. “But when everyone is going to come at you every night on the defensive end and then we’re asking you to do everything offensive, it’s going to show within 25 games. And I would say that’s somewhere around Christmas.”
Doncic has been putting the Mavericks on his back this season, averaging 33.6 points, 8.3 rebounds, 7.9 rebounds, 2.5 threes and 2.0 steals on .488/.290/.736 shooting splits.
According to PBP Stats, 93.5% of Doncic’s shots are self-created, meaning he has the ball for at least two seconds before shooting. Since they started tracking this stat, there have only been four other instances where a player was above 90%. And Doncic is scoring most of his points at the rim, which is even harder on a player’s body.
“Everyone’s going to say he’s 23 years old, but he’s human,” Kidd said. “The other side of this is he’s falling a lot right now and that’s one of the areas that we’ll talk about is I’m going to try to keep him off the floor. Wood always wins, because he is human. Bruises will start to appear. You look at the great ones. (Allen Iverson), a lot of guys hit the floor a lot. It doesn’t catch (up to) you in that year or the second year, but Father Time (wins) faster just because of the hits. And it’s not the physical hits, the human-to-human hits – it’s the floor. The floor is going to win. It’s always won, it’s always been hard, and it’s not going to change. So we have to figure out how to keep him on his feet.”