NBA: Luka Doncic says thigh injury ‘better’ as season approaches

Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic, left, smiles with teammate forward Grant Williams during an NBA basketball training camp in Dallas, Thursday, Sept. 28, 2023. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic said Wednesday he’s still seeking a precise diagnosis for the thigh injury that has troubled him since March.

“It’s better, but we still have some appointments,” Doncic told reporters at the Mavericks’ first practice of training camp, adding that as soon as he had a clear diagnosis he would share it.

The Slovenian star missed five games in March with what the team called a thigh strain.

During the recently concluded Fiba World Cup, where Slovenia was ousted in the quarter-finals by Canada, Doncic said it appeared to be an old injury that had flared up.

On Wednesday, neither the 24-year-old player nor veteran coach Jason Kidd seemed overly concerned, with the start of the regular season less than a month away.

“He’s probably not 100%,” Kidd said. “Anytime you play, it’s hard to be 100%. I think he looks great. His first day was great.

“And so the topic of getting him stronger, and getting him close to 100% before the first game is the goal.”

Kidd said he expected Doncic, entering his sixth NBA season, to participate in the two-a-day workouts he has scheduled for Thursday and Friday.

They will have single practices on Saturday and Sunday before departing on a 12-day trip to Abu Dhabi — where they play pre-season games against Minnesota on Thursday and Saturday — and Spain, where they play Doncic’s former EuroLeague team Real Madrid.

“Our schedule is a little different than just a normal pre-season,” Kidd said. “We’re gone for 12 days. So we’re going to try to get as much (training) as we can before we leave on Sunday.”

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