Hoops Notes: Doncic, Wizards, Duke, Chandler

Mavericks rookie swingman Luke Doncic is opening eyes around the NBA after a brilliant start.

Dallas Mavericks do-it-all swingman Luka Doncic is all the rookie rage after being near unstoppable during the first month of the season, and the Washington Wizards got to experience why.

Doncic scored 23 points and grabbed six rebounds in the Mavericks’ 119-100 dismantling of the Wizards on Monday night.

“He’s a knockdown shooter, and that extra distance that he has to shoot from, he’s already adapted well,” Wizards coach Scott Brooks told reporters. “He’s impressive. Every game you look at him you say, ‘OK,you sure this guy’s only 19?'”

Doncic is averaging 19.8 points, 6.5 rebounds and 4.4 assists. He was drafted third overall by the Atlanta Hawks, then traded to the Mavericks for sixth overall pick Trae Young.

Here’s more from around the league:

* Despite higher expectations, the Wizards have struggled mightily, particularly when it comes to defense. They gave up 70 points to the Mavs in the first half, prompting Dwight Howard to question his team’s effort. “We’ve got to get better. That’s all I can say,” he told reporters. “We’ve got to lock in better on the defensive end and we’ll start getting wins.”

* Chicago Bulls general manager Gar Forman and associate GM Brian Hagen were among the many NBA team execs in Indianapolis to witness the opening of college basketball season — with Kansas defeating Michigan State and Duke stomping Kentucky. After one night of college hoops, it’s safe to say Blue Devils guard R.J. Barrett and forward Zion Williamson are projected to be the top two picks in the draft. Potential lottery teams such as the Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers and several others will be attending a LOT of Duke games from the very start.

* New Los Angeles Lakers center Tyson Chandler will make his debut Wednesday night vs. the Minnesota Timberwolves, according to a report from Jordan Schultz of Yahoo Sports. You can watch an interview with Chandler on his LA decision at the bottom of this post. No less than five teams were interested in signing Chandler following his buyout with the Phoenix Suns.